Tableau blending

I will explain how data blending works in this simple Tableau Blending tutorial. I am using fiction data of monthly spending. You can download the excel file here: Steve_And_Karen. The blending operation in Tableau is a left join that can be done on the fly. With data blending you can see instant changes in your visuals when selecting or deselecting possible joins.

Lets say that Steve and Karen are boyfriend and girlfriend, so they are looking at their spending data of last three months to evaluate what their total spending might be. 

Importing data before Tableau blending

In this case you have two data sets (for Steve and Karen) in the different sheets of the same excel file. These are the files for which you want to do Tableau blending. What you have to do after opening your excel file in Tableau is to select on of the excel sheets either Karen or Steve. Then you open your Tableau sheet and press Crtl + D for new data source and select other sheet of the Steve_And_Karen excel file. After that you go to your Tableau Sheet1 and what you have to see is this: tableau blending This means that your sheet is connected to both sides of spending data for girlfriend and boyfriend. Now the first action is to drag Sum, Eu measure to the columns field (remember that we are doing it when Karen part of data is selected as it is shown above). After doing this you only see that Karen’s spending total is 1385 Euros. Now in data selection field you see checkmark at the Karen’s data part icon, this means that visualization is coming from this data source: tableau blending Secondly, we are dragging Karen’s spending and month dimensions to Rows field. Now we can see how she spends money in January, February and March: tableaublending Because we don’t see anything about Steve’s expenditure, we have to select his part of database and drag his Sum, Eu measure to Columns field. Now we see that new right side horizontal bars occurred. The bad thing that we have the same number (1285) for every month and spending type, because it comes from total Steve’s three month expenditures.tableau blending

Blending the data

After dragging Steve’s Sum, Eu to the columns field we see that two grey linking icons appeared: Just press on those crossed links. As you did that, these links became red and visuals in your sheet changed. Now you can see Steve’s side of the chard blended with the primary data of Karen’s. Congrats, you’ve just finished your first data blending. This happened because fields in Karen’s and Steve’s databases had same names, so an option to left join through those data sources (blend) appeared. Below is the final chart (red checkmark indicates that it comes from secondary data source as primary source is Karen’s sheet):