Visio Chart

Charts & Graph For Data Visualization

The Sankey diagram and the sunburst diagrams may seem to be new elements, although they are common things that are applied on daily occasions. You cannot monitor your customer’s journey without shedding light on these two crucial data elements. These charts play an integral role in breaking down complex data elements and excellently organizing them.

In addition, the charts can be used in data segmentation based on different categories. This has made it evident that the two greatly impact the development of businesses within different sectors. However, many people are unfamiliar with the sunburst diagram and the Sankey diagram. This article has more information about everything you need to know.

What are Sunburst and Sankey Diagrams?

In simple words, you can define the sunburst and Sankey diagram as interactive charts. The two are known for offering a quick graphical representation of customers’ paths before reaching a solution. The conclusion can be something like checking out, and sometimes they decide to visit and evaluate more from the competitors’ page.

Besides, you need to understand that sunburst and the Sankey diagram depict information differently. Some scenarios are good for the sunburst diagram, while others require the Sankey diagram. When you analyze all the essential matters with a more detailed eye, you will realize that choosing the two depends on a personal preference.

This means that to make the right decision, you need to understand what the two charts entail and how they can be used in data presentation. Let’s check them out!

Everything You Need to Know About a Sankey Diagram

The Sankey chart is mostly used as the traditional flow chart that is used to display the flow of data. It can be used to display data either horizontally or vertically, depending on the business needs. The key thing you need to understand is that the chart has a point of origin. The is also applied to the starting point of every customer who gets to your business intending to make a purchase.

Advantages of Using a Sankey Diagram

A Sankey chart allows you to navigate different destinations and evaluate various journeys that consumers are likely to choose before coming to an outreach. In addition, the chart gives you a more precise look throughout the customer experience enabling you to uncover any hidden unwanted paths that are likely to waste more time for customers.

Note that the customer’s journey is a significant roadmap that needs to be visualized to the latter. This is where the Sankey chart comes into action by visualizing the entire roadmap to ensure that everything is smooth to enhance the well-being of respective customers. By conducting thorough visualization, you will be able to identify how small adjustments can aid in refining the customers’ journey and the success of your business.

The Sankey diagram helps analyse data results that may be crisscrossing each other to limit the level of negative outcomes that are likely to affect the business performance. As a result, it ensures that the business environment is entirely safe for conducting business operations and customers are satisfied.

Disadvantages of Using a Sankey Diagram

Even though a Sankey chart has a significant impact on the success of businesses, it also has its negating side that data professionals need to understand. The Sankey chart is mainly limited to the number of journey steps it can present to a specific market audience. This limits the mode in which data needs to be presented since the readers miss out on some crucial points since they are omitted from the presentation.

Given that the Sankey chart represents the flow of customer data, it’s likely to be cluttered when the presentation has not been done accurately. When the chart becomes cluttered, it becomes difficult to read since you cannot point out the flow of data easily. This means that you need to be keen to ensure that everything is outlined clearly to make it easier for the readers to read through the lines and comprehend the information. 

It’s no secret that this strategy of data presentation has its drawback that you need to understand. However, it remains to be one of the best ways that you can use to present information without getting worried about how your audience is likely to perceive it. The chart makes it easier for readers to quickly identify the crucial data insights necessary for the well-being of the business.

What is a Sunburst Diagram?

A Sunburst diagram is presented radially with cascading data patterns. On the diagram, the respective source is located at the centre, contrary to a Sankey chart. The steps taken by the customer are arranged in a concentric segmented circle that is found within the chart. The final circle on the chart is meant to represent the final outcomes of the customer experience.

Advantages of using a Sunburst Chart

Like the Sankey chart, a Sunburst chart enables users to navigate around all the vital data elements easily and understand more about the custom journey. Remember that the customer journey is a key aspect that you need to evaluate within your business to increase the conversion rate. It gives you a clear picture of the steps made by consumers to help you identify the key investment areas.

Note that you don’t need to channel all your investment at one point, yet the returns are not worth it. You need to invest in areas where you are sure of getting significant returns at the end of the day. The sunburst chart helps you identify the key areas worth your time, money and efforts to yield better results that will impact your business growth

The sunburst chart has your back covered if you have massive amounts of data collected from the custom journey and want to visualize. The chart plays a huge role in analyzing massive amounts of data and generating an in-depth, easy-to-read and understandable report. Due to the radial nature of the chart, you won’t experience any challenges when analyzing your data content.

Also, it’s a good choice when analyzing data values based on different levels depending on the nature of output you intend to get at the end. It gives a clear summary of data such as the total number of user sessions, the conversion rate, and customer sessions at different stages. This ends up giving a detailed report that you can use to analyze the areas of weakness and strength within the business.

Disadvantages of Using Sunburst Charts

The sunburst chart has a problem with crisscrossing outcomes when analyzing the consumer behaviour. This means that the results that you get at the end of the process may vary from time to time, depending on the respective circumstances. Besides, the sunburst charts are more compact and do not work well when used to determine data flow.

They do not work well, especially when you want the final output to appear in a graphical format. Even though the chart can accommodate as much information as possible, the final output becomes difficult to read since the information is stuffed together. As a result, readers get it challenging to read the entire customer journey in a single session since they have to repeat the process multiple times.


The Sankey, and the Sunburst chart are crucial elements of data visualization, especially when analyzing the flow of different components. However, there is a need to understand the ups and downs of the two charts to make a sound decision when you want to conduct data analysis. The two play a huge role in helping business owners understand more about the customer journey and some of the challenges they tend to experience on the way. Do you know how to use the two charts? This article has everything you need to get started!

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