Building a Marimekko chart in Oracle Analytics

November 27, 2023 | 9 minute read
Prasenjit Thakur
Senior Product Manager
Text Size 100%:

Fig. 1. Marimekko chart

                                                                                                      Figure 1: A Marimekko chart

This article describes the plug-in and the steps for building a creative Marimekko chart in Oracle Analytics.

The power of a Marimekko chart

A Marimekko chart (also known as a mekko chart or mosaic plot) is a powerful data visualization because it captures multiple dimensions in one chart. It combines a 100% stacked column chart and a 100% stacked bar chart. It’s like a treemap with dimensional values represented by the length and width of each rectangle. The area of the rectangles is proportional to the value of the metric.

You can spontaneously spot the impactful segments and the underperforming ones. You can visualize categorical data over a pair of variables. Both axes are variable on a percentage scale that determines the width and height of each segment. You can detect relationships between categories and their subcategories using the two axes.

Real-world applications

Consider using the Marimekko chart in these types of situations:

  • Visualizing sales data: tracking sales over time and identifying seasonal patterns.
  • Segmentation: customer and product segmentation.
  • Customer data: tracking customer demographics and spending habits.
  • Comparing multiple dimensions.
  • Identifying trends and patterns.

Dataset overview

Fig. 2. Sales Dataset

                                                                                             Figure 2: Sales Dataset

The table shows a Sales dataset with sales values for various customer segments and product categories. The Oracle Analytics Marimekko chart provides the following insights in a single visualization:

  1. Sales value for each segment and category.
  2. Percent contribution of the segments and the categories to total sales.
  3. Percent contribution of the product categories to the segment sales and vice-versa.

Use the sales dataset to measure these objectives using a 100% stacked bar chart, a stacked bar chart, and a treemap. Then, you can see how a Marimekko chart combines all three visualizations.

Analyze using a 100% stacked bar chart

Select Sales, Product category, and Customer segment to create a 100% stacked bar chart.

Fig.3. A 100% stacked bar chart

                                                                                                Figure 3: A 100% stacked bar chart

You can measure the sales contribution of the product category to the segment sales. But can you figure out the contribution of the segments to the overall sales? Can you figure out the contribution of the product categories to the total sales?

Analyze using a stacked bar chart

Fig.4. A stacked bar chart

                                                                                                                      Figure 4: A stacked bar chart

You can read values for each customer segment but still can’t figure out the percent contribution of the segments to the total sales. It’s also difficult to measure the sales contribution of the product categories.

Analyze using a treemap

Fig. 5. A Treemap

                                                                                                              Figure 5: A treemap

Though the box sizes explain about the sales performance, the exact contribution of the segments or the categories is unknown.  A Marimekko chart adds value by combining all three visualizations to display multiple insights in a single chart.

Create a Marimekko chart in Oracle Analytics

Download the Marimekko plug-in from the Oracle Analytics Extensions Library.

Fig. 6. Oracle Extensions Library

                                                                                                Figure 6: Oracle Analytics Extensions Library

After downloading the file, import the plug-in to Oracle Analytics by clicking the left-top hamburger icon, Console, Extension, and Upload Extension. After importing, the plug-in is available in all workbooks within the Custom Visualizations section.

Fig.11. The Custom Visualizations section in a workbook

                                                                          Figure 7: Custom Visualizations section in a workbook

Plot a Marimekko chart by dragging the Marimekko plug-in onto a canvas. Select Sales in ‘Values(Box Size)’ grammar, Customer Segment in ‘Category’ grammar, and Product Category in ‘Color’ grammar.

Fig.12. Marimekko chart grammar

                                                                                                      Figure 8: Marimekko chart grammar

Now, you can infer that Corporate Segment contributes to the highest sales, with a value of 3M and 36% of the total sales. On the other hand, Small Business contributes to only 19% with a sales value of 1.6M. By drilling down, you can see that the Technology product category within Corporate Segment contributes to 16% of total sales.

The Marimekko chart has various properties including Display label, Value, and Percent of.

Fig.13. Properties of Marimekko chart

                                                                                                Figure 9: Properties of a Marimekko chart

By selecting ‘Percent of’ as ‘Total’, the % contribution to the overall sales is displayed. For example, the Technology product category within the Corporate Segment contributes to 16% of the total sales. The Office Supplies category in the Consumer segment contributes to only 5% of the overall sales.

If you select Category as percent, the result is displayed as shown in Figure 10. The Technology category contributes to 45% of the Corporate Segment sales.

 Fig.14. Category Percent, Marimekko chart

                                                                                                     Figure 10: Category percent, Marimekko chart

You can either hide or unhide the Legends property by selecting On or Off. You can see the exact sales value using the Value property. Enabling the Display Label property displays the category name on the chart.

Use the Highlighting features

The Marimekko chart has various interaction abilities. Figure 11 shows a Marimekko chart and a scatter plot.

Fig.15. Interaction abilities of Marimekko chart

                                                                                                 Figure 11: Interactions in a Marimekko chart

By selecting the Furniture category and Consumer Segment in the scatter plot, the same is highlighted on the Marimekko chart.

 Fig.16. Highlight property of Marimekko chart

                                                                                                   Figure 12: Highlight property of a Marimekko chart

Similarly, by selecting the Corporate Segment and Technology category on the Marimekko chart, the same combination is highlighted on the scatter plot.

Fig.17. Highlight property of Marimekko chart

                                                                                             Figure 13: Highlight property of a Marimekko chart

Marimekko charts can be hard to read, especially when there are many segments. Also, it’s hard to accurately make comparisons between each segment, because they’re not all arranged next to each other along a common baseline. Therefore, Marimekko Charts are better suited for providing a general overview of data.

Call to Action

The Marimekko plugin is available on the Oracle Analytics Extensions library. You can download it from here. You can follow this Youtube video that highlights the use of the Marimekko visualization plug-in in Oracle Analytics.

Prasenjit Thakur

Senior Product Manager


Previous Post

Oracle Analytics Best Practices: Oracle EPM Cloud as a Data Source for a Repository Subject Area

Doug Marshik | 4 min read

Next Post


Provide Personalization in Workbooks in Oracle Analytics Cloud

Abhinav Chaurasia | 5 min read