Bowling chart templates help in analyzing key performance indicators (KPI) in a simple colored chart. It is called a bowling chart because the design of the template resembles the scorecard of bowling competitions. It is one of the easiest ways to understand which way a business is heading.
Example Template #1
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In a typical bowling scorecard, there are 10 frames. In a bowling chart template, we usually have 12 frames – one for each month. Despite the similarity in design with a bowling scorecard, bowling chart templates have a very different approach.
The design of a bowling chart template
Example Template #2
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Bowling chart templates usually follow a simple template. There are two rows in every frame. One of these rows gives the target, and another shows the actual result. For example, if your goal was to convert ten leads in a month, the target column would have the number 10. The target column is also white. Now assume that you managed to convert only 8 leads. The actual column would have the number 8. Since it is short of the target, the box would be colored red. If you converted 12 leads, the actual column would be colored green.
Example Template #3
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One of the key reasons behind the growing popularity of bowling chart templates is its ease of use. They are a simple tool to analyze how a business or company is performing over a period. Bowling charts are also easy to read. The color coded pattern makes it easier to understand what the chart is saying. If you see a lot of red boxes, you can immediately assume a poor performance. Similarly, a lot of green boxes mean good news.
Example Template #4
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Apart from red and green, there is also a third color in bowling chart templates – yellow. If you have missed the target by a small margin, the ‘actual’ box would be colored yellow.
Components of a bowling chart template
Example Template #5
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A bowling chart template usually has 5 components:
- A header depicting the year under review
- A sub header or header mentioning the areas under review
- Columns for every month, week, or day
- Rows for every key performance indicator
- Two cells for each key performance indicator – target and actual
Example Template #6
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As you can see, bowling charts are not very detailed or intricate. They usually have a fairly simple layout. You can easily make a bowling chart with our templates. Once you have the key components in place, the remaining task is nothing more than filling up the boxes.
How to make a bowling chart
Example Template #7
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To make a bowling chart, you first need a bowling chart template. As you can see, we have 17 templates for you here. You can pick whichever you think would work the best for you. Alternatviely, you can make your customized bowling chart template in a spreadsheet software. You can easily make a bowling chart in MS Excel and Google Sheets.
Example Template #8
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Once you have the design ready, the next focus should be on gathering data. Not just that, the data you gather needs to be accurate. Bowling charts would not be of any use if the data is not accurate and up to date.
Example Template #9
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When maintaining a bowling chart for the long term (1 year or more), the process of gathering data has to be consistent. You have to meticulously input data for each row and column. If you make errors in the data entry process, the bowling chart would show misleading results. To make things easier, try to automate the process of data entry.
Example Template #10
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The last step in making a bowling chart is to ensure you are using the correct headers and labels. If you are making a bowling chart template to track sales, it should not have irrelevant headers in it. You would not want to have details about finances and taxes in a bowling chart dedicated to sales.
Which sectors can benefit from bowling chart templates?
Example Template #11
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As you can guess, bowling charts are especially popular among sales and marketing teams. In most cases, it is a table for keeping track of sales and conversions. However, the use case of bowling charts is not restricted to sales teams.
For example, finance teams can also benefit from bowling chart templates. They can keep meticulous record of where the budget is going and whether it is going at the right place.
Example Template #12
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If you are running a small business, you need to take care of everything by yourself. Be it sales, finances, or customer acquisition – you have to do it all. For such cases, bowling chart templates can be especially beneficial. It helps you keep clear record of every movement and expenditure. On top of that, these charts make it easier for you to trace progress over a given period. If you see poor performance for months on end, it indicates some deeper problem in the business model.
Example Template #13
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Intertesingly enough, creatives can also use bowling chart templates to keep a track of their ideas and concepts. Let’s take an example:
If you are pitching for an advertisement and have multiple ideas, you can enlist each of them in a bowling chart template. Now you can survey people and see how they react to the different ideas. If you are seeing positive response, your bowling chart would be overwhelmingly green. If people don’t like the ideas, it would be mostly red. When you don’t know how to categorize the reaction, you can keep it yellow.
Example Template #14
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People from different sectors can implement the same philosophy to make bowling chart templates that work for them. Be it medical, IT, services, commodities – every sector has some use cases for bowling chart templates. All you need is a little creativity and adaptability to make your own, customized bowling charts.
Common mistakes in bowling chart templates
Example Template #15
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While there isn’t much room for error in bowling chart templates, people still get it wrong. Most of the time these are simple mistakes that we easily overlook. However, small mistakes can add up over time and make your bowling chart results misleading. Let’s see what these mistakes are.
Incorrect color coding
Red, green and yellow are universal colors. Red always mean danger or undesirable results. Green, on the other hand, is always a sign of progress or approval. To keep things simple, try to stick to these two colors only. If you feel that two are not enough, add yellow to the mix.
The mistake that many people make is brining in too many colors. If you have ten different colors for ten separate metrics, the final result would be very confusing. It is always a smarter choice to keep things simple and overdo your bowling chart template.
Not keeping track of data
Example Template #16
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In the flow of everyday life, we might not be able to maintain a bowling chart 24/7 for 365 days. Unfortunately, or fortunately, bowling charts demand that level of commitment. It takes hard work and discipline to keep an accurate tab of every single day’s results.
If you can automate the data entry processes, keeping an accurate tab would be much easier. In case you cannot, you must manually input data without fail.
To make things simpler, you can break down the timeline into smaller components. Take one week at a time instead of thinking about the entire year.
Not being flexible
Key performance indicators need not be uniform across an year or more. In some months, you might be focusing more on sales. In other months, your focus can primarily be on marketing. Your bowling chart template should be flexible accordingly.
If you are maintaining an editable bowling chart template, it is easier to make changes. You can do it as and when required. Being adaptable is also a mindset that you need to adopt. If you can change your bowling chart dynamically, it will do a much better job of giving accurate results.
Flashy and bold designs / color combinations
A bowling chart template is not a flyer or banner. It does not need aesthetic elements to be effective, and you do not have to add content to it. If you are spending too much time on the design and aesthetics of the chart, its main function is being sidelined.
Refrain from using anything apart from white as the background. When it comes to fonts, keep them simple and legible. If you are keen on adding design elements, restrict them to logos and icons. The sleeker they are, the better.
Example Template #17
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As you can see, bowling chart templates can be an incredibly effective tool to keep track of progress. They are easy to make and use. Businesses of all sizes can benefit from bowling chart templates.
The only things you need to be mindful of are keeping the design and color coding simple. Try to keep it as minimal as possible. If you feel the need for separate elements, you can add them as you move forward.
We hope these bowling chart templates will help you make effective bowling charts and take your business to the next level.