Add visuals to a Power BI report (part 1)

APPLIES TO: Does not apply to.Power BI service for consumers Applies to.Power BI service for designers & developers Applies to.Power BI Desktop Does not apply to.Requires Pro or Premium license


Smart narrative visuals can be created and viewed in both Power BI Desktop and the Power BI service. The steps and illustrations in this article are from Power BI Desktop.

This article gives a quick introduction to creating a visualization in a report. It applies to both the Power BI service and Power BI Desktop. For more-advanced content, see Part 2 of this series.


This tutorial uses the Sales & marketing PBIX file.

  1. From the upper left section of the Power BI Desktop menu bar, select File > Open

  2. Find your copy of the Sales and marketing sample PBIX file

  3. Open the Sales and marketing sample PBIX file in report view Screenshot of the report view icon..

  4. Select Screenshot of the yellow tab. to add a new page.


Sharing your report with a Power BI colleague requires that you both have individual Power BI Pro licenses or that the report is saved in Premium capacity. See sharing reports

Add visualizations to the report

  1. Create a visualization by selecting a field from the Fields pane.

    Start with a numeric field like Sales > TotalSales. Power BI creates a column chart with a single column.

    Screenshot of a column chart with a single column.

    Or, start with a category field, such as Name or Product. Power BI creates a table and adds that field to the Values well.

    Screenshot of a table with four categories

    Or, start with a geography field, such as Geo > City. Power BI and Bing Maps create a map visualization.

    Screenshot of a map visualization.

Change the type of visualization

Create a visualization and then change its type.

  1. Select Product > Category and then Product > Count of Product to add them both to the Values well.

    Screenshot of the Fields pane with the Values well called out.

  2. Change the visualization to a column chart by selecting the Stacked column chart icon.

    Screenshot of the Visualizations pane with the Stacked column chart icon called out.

  3. To change the way the visual is sorted, select More actions (...). Use the sort options to change the direction of the sort (ascending or descending) and change the column being used to sort (Sort by).

    Screenshot of the More actions dropdown.

Next steps

Continue on to: