How to Make a Good Report in Microsoft Power BI [Visual Guide]

Microsoft’s Power BI is one of the leading business intelligence tools enterprises use.

Power BI stands out from other business intelligence tools based on Google Trends in terms of Google search queries and popularity among professionals.

Google Trends

Source: Google Trends

If you have just started learning about Power BI, then read this complete guide about how long it takes to learn Power BI for a beginner.

Power BI reports are useful in explaining the dataset visually for better understanding. The tool can be seamlessly used within the organization’s departments to create well-vetted Power BI reports improving the business operations.

But multiple business professionals have confusion in creating quality Power BI reports among different non-technical experts. Chances are, you might face trouble creating your first Power BI report, but don’t worry.

We’ve got you covered.

We’ll help you understand how to make a good report in Microsoft Power BI within a few simple steps. So, without further ado, let’s get started.

Here is a step-by-step process for creating a Power BI reports in 3 steps.

How to Make Power BI Reports in 3 Simple Steps

Before kickstarting the Power BI report creation, you need a blank report canvas and a dataset.

Step 1: Click the ‘Datasets’ section and click the ‘Create Report’ icon in your workspace.

Create Report

Source: Power BI

Once you click the report creation button, Power BI will open the editor or the report builder where the action takes place.

The tableau product suite is segmented into multiple parts:

Report builder

Source: Power BI

There are three primary sections in the Power BI report builder, i.e., canvas, field pane, and visualization pane.

Canvas: The canvas is the white space at the center where you can view the visuals and make the changes for further assessment.

Field Pane: The field pane has the different fields of the dataset.

Visual Pane: The visualization pane is where you can modify or edit the visualization like the type of format, option, and visualization to want in your report.

If you have prior knowledge about creating graphs and charts using Excel, then it will be easier for you to use the Power BI dashboard and create intuitive reports compared to Excel.

We have selected the “Retail Analysis Sample” dataset prepared by Microsoft, composed of different retail items sold across different districts and stores.

The dataset also has information about the year’s performance, units, last year’s sales, variance, gross margin, and other factors.

The sales report we’ll make will be about the total sales per year per item category.
We’ll select the fields and then add visualization. Let’s see how that happens.

Create a Visual Representation of Dataset

Step 2: In the field pane, select “Sales” and click “Total Units This Year.”

Total Units Sales

Source: Power BI

Step 3: Click on the “Item and then “Category” to extract the visuals on the canvas.

Total Units Category

Source: Power BI

If you want to change the type of visual of the data, you need to move to the visualization pane and then click on the favorite visual element to convert the data into a different visual representation.

pie chart visualizations

Source: Power BI

Simple, right?

That’s how easy it is to convert the dataset into your desired visual format using Power BI.

Modify Your Report

The initial visual representation of data might appear smaller; you can edit the report using Power BI within a few clicks.

You can enlarge the visuals to your desired size by clicking the visual and dragging it by the corners.

Then you can enlarge the title, detail labels, legend, and other texts of your report by selecting “Format” on the visualization pane.

format button visualizations

Source: Power BI

A different set of edit options are available for a different visual representation. You can change the format using those options.

If you want to increase the text size, then go to “Title,” “Detail Labels,” and “Legend,” and then change the text size.

Text size pie chart

Source: Power BI

You can experiment with multiple options available and change the visual representation of the reports. Power BI enables you to explore your creativity and create the best data visualization reports for better understanding.

Once done with the amendments, you can save your report easily to make it ready for sharing across multiple channels.

Share Your First Power BI Report

You can save your report and then exit the Power BI editor. Click on “File” and then select “Save” to enter a name for your Power BI.

Save Report

Source: Power BI

You can finish the report creation process and share it with your team members or upload it on the Power BI Report Server to analyze the data sets in the best and most intuitive format.

You have access to edit and create reports using the Power BI desktop and then make them public on the web portal for different professionals to access your reports.

The review team can access the reports using the browser or the Power BI application available on iOS and Android devices.

Slowly and steadily, you’ll learn more about the wider horizon of features available in Power BI and become efficient in report building. You know how to create a Power BI report. Now, let’s get a quick overview of how Power BI assists your business.

How Does Power BI Assist Your Business?

If you go through a list of top Power BI books, you will find Microsoft’s Power BI is one of the top data visualization tools that can assist you in visualizing data using scalable, unified platforms for enterprise business intelligence and helps extract deeper data insights.

It assists professionals in bridging the gap between decision-making and data. Here’s how Power BI can help your business:

  1. Create Great Data Experiences

    You can easily connect to the model to visualize your data and create Power BI reports tailored to your requirements and goals. You can get AI-powered, fast answers to your business queries while using conversational language with the help of Power BI.

    The drag and drop functionalities of the tool enable it to remove the complexities and assist you in using the tool to its maximum potential. You can create customized visuals using the Power BI developer that has multiple built-in features and styles to assist you in creating great reports.

    The user-friendly experience of the tool delivers a quality data reporting experience and enables you to achieve your desired outcomes within no time.

  2. Better Decision-making

    Your team can work together on the data reports and share valuable insights across multiple Microsoft Office applications like Excel and Microsoft Teams.

    Using multiple features and different visual effects, you and your team can create intuitive reports that can help you create detailed reports for better results.

    Different organization members can access the reports and analyze them to make well-informed decisions.

  3. Great Protection

    You can protect your data across dashboards, Power BI reports, and other data sets. Persistent power is provided to the reports even if the reports are shared outside the organization.

    You can even export the reports in different formats like PDF, PowerPoint, and Excel, and it won’t affect the security of the file. It can help keep your essential data safe from external threats and attacks.

  4. Data Management

    Using Microsoft Power BI enables you to save your reports in desired formats like Excel or Word, which can help you increase the horizon of the report’s accessibility.

    The software allows you to control versions using deployment pipelines available in the top-end version of Power BI.

  5. Great Support

    Power BI provides you with a library of 500+ free connectors that can assist you in making data-driven decisions. You can connect with hundreds of cloud data and on-premises sources like Salesforce, Excel, Dynamics 365, Azure SQL Database, and SharePoint.

    Microsoft offers a range of partner businesses that provide knowledge and consulting services. Power BI offers a powerful support network with traditional support resources and community forms to assist you in bypassing different dynamic issues and problems in making tailored Power BI reports.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Power BI a powerful intelligence tool?

Yes, Microsoft’s Power BI service is one of the leading Power BI tools that can assist you in converting your datasets into intuitive visual representations that can assist you in analyzing better and achieving your business goals.

What’s the major difference between SAP and Power BI?

There are considerable differences between SAP BusinessObjects and Microsoft’s Power BI. These tools deliver different results when aspects like pricing, document management process, data visualization, analytics, data services, and extra features are analyzed. But apart from the difference, these tools are considered the leading business intelligence tools in the industry.

Is Power BI affordable?

Yes, Power BI is highly affordable compared to multiple other business intelligence tools in the industry. The base price of the tool is $8.11 per user per month. The pro version of the tool can cost you around $16.34 per user per month. You can explore multiple other pricing options on the platform’s website.

Can I use Power BI to handle complex operations?

You can use Power BI to handle complexities from different data sources and create powerful reports using the software. But if IT professionals handle the enterprise data and extract the results using professional business intelligence tools, you can switch to more powerful tools like SAP BusinessObjects.

How to create my first report using Power BI?

You need a dataset to create your first report using Power BI. You need to load the dataset and open the Power BI editor to convert the data into different visual representations.

Switch To Power BI For Creating Report Building

You can explore the benefits of Power BI once you kick start creating well-vetted data reports. The tool has multiple options and great features to assist non-technical professionals in seamlessly handling their report-building process.

If you don’t have a professional IT team to manage your BI and you want to access the BI tools at highly cost-effective prices, then you can choose Microsoft BI to convert raw data into an insightful and intuitive visual representation.

So, what’s making you wait?

Install the Power BI Desktop application and create your first Power BI report.

Gaurang Bhatt

Written by

Gaurang Bhatt

Gaurang has 15+ years of experience solving complex business problems and enabling businesses with data-driven decisions using data analysis and predictive modeling tools like Tableau, Power BI, Looker, and Google Data Studio. His expertise lies in data visualization, reporting, and creating ETL pipelines. In addition, he is passionate about exploring different technologies like machine learning and AI. He shares his knowledge and learnings on the LabsMedia platform.