A First Look at the Google Data Studio

In this tutorial, we will have a first look at the main report building elements.


On the top of the page is a toolbar, and on the right upper corner is a share button and a “View” button. By default, you are in “Edit” mode.

  • Add a page: You can add several pages to each report.
  • Undo and Redo: When you make a mistake, such removing the erroneous word from a phrase, you may utilize the undo feature to fix it. The redo function restores any previously undone activities. This capability may be referred to as a "reverse undo" by some. The keyboard keys Ctrl+Z (undo) and Ctrl+Y (redo) may also be used (redo).
  • Selection Mode: To pick a chart or other components on your canvas, click this pointer icon. On the right side of the screen, a settings tab will appear when you choose an element.
  • Add data: In order to add new data sources.
  • Add a chart: In order to add charts.
  • Community visualization and components: You can add data sources from 3rd part creators. They are usually paid.
  • Add a control: Using this dropdown, you may add a control, such as a dropdown list, slider or checkbox.
  • URL Embed: Video and other documents may be embedded right in the text.
  • Image: Using your PC or a URL, it adds a picture.
  • Text: It inserts a text box.
  • Line: A line may have arrows and curves, and you can create basic or sophisticated ones with it.
  • Shape: Basic forms like rectangles and circles may be inserted.
  • Theme and layout: Your report's theme and layout may be changed in order to make it more visually appealing.


This is where you'll be inserting charts, tables, images, and other design elements. This is the main "report"


When there are no items in the main grid, you may change the page's style and layout. Adding dimensions and metrics to your data is done on the right-hand bar after you've picked a chart.

Editor in Detail

When non of the elements/charts are selected, you will see this version with 2 tabs.

Theme Tab

Data Studio offers a number of predefined themes for your report. You can create a professional look quickly by selecting an existing theme. More on theme you can check here.

Layout Tab

For example, in View mode you may alter the report's appearance, size and orientation, as well as other grid-related aspects. We encourage you to play with with each option and find which one works best for you.

When any element/chart is selected, then this sidebar becomes the editor for that specific chart. Again we will have 2 tabs.


This tab will let you choose dimensions and metrics, filter them or sort them.


The style tab will let you edit and change the style of chosen chart. Each chart has unique options.

The layout choices in the Theme and Layout panel may be used to change the appearance of your report on the viewer's screen.

💡 The Theme and Layout panel appears when no report components are selected.

You can display this panel at any time by clicking Theme and Layout in the toolbar. Many of the options described here are also found in the View menu.

View Mode

Header visibility

In view mode, the header visibility choices determine how the report header behaves. The report title, share button, and edit button are all located in the header.

  • Always show—Whenever you open a report, you'll see the report's heading.
  • Auto-hide—When the report heading is auto-hidden, it displays momentarily, then disappears. To re-display the header, just move your cursor over it.
  • Initially hidden—Until you hover your cursor over the header area, the report's header is concealed.

A report's pagination controls are determined by its navigation position choices.

Left - A collapsible panel on the left of the screen provides the report page navigation for users.

Top - Above the report, you'll see a menu bar labeled "Top."

Display mode

In the browser window, your report's layout is determined by the display mode selections.

  • Fit to width scales the report's components to fit the window's dimensions.
  • The actual size - Report components are shown in their original size in the real size.
  • Has margin shown or hides the margin area surrounding the report. Hiding the margin makes the report appear to occupy the entire window.

Canvas Size

You may choose from a variety of predefined canvas sizes or input custom display measurements using the canvas size settings. Preset sizes include:

  • US Letter (4:3) - Portrait
  • US Letter (4:3) - Landscape
  • Screen (16:9) - Portrait
  • Screen (16:9) - Landscape

You might change width and height to use a custom canvas as well.

Snap to

The snap to options governs how components you place on the report are positioned.

Smart guides - Colored lines help you position, resize, and space the components you've chosen. How does it work;

  • Align components: When a component is aligned with another component on the canvas, a red line emerges on the canvas.
  • Resize components: Component resizing shows the component's current size in pixels as well as blue lines when it is the same length or breadth as other components on the canvas.
  • Space components: while moving one or more components, blue lines appear when those components are spaced equally with other components on the canvas.

Grid - The chosen components will be aligned to the report canvas's visible grid when you use Grid.

Grid Settings

A 10 pixel canvas grid is the very minimum. Grid Settings allow you to change this. Layouting your charts, controls, and other components is made simpler by increasing the grid size.

  • Size - The dimensions of the grid's squares are determined by the value of size.
  • The padding - Padding makes the grid squares larger. This may be used to separate components that are in close proximity.
  • Horizontal offset - The margins to the left and right of your report are determined by the horizontal offset. For the left offset, use a positive value. The right offset should be a negative value.
  • Vertical offset - The top and bottom margins of your report are determined by using vertical offset. For the top offset, use a positive value. The bottom offset should be negative. Make use of this to add headers and footers to your document.

You can't make any changes to components that are already in place. This rule only applies to newly added or relocated components.

Whenever you add a new component on the canvas that can fit into one or more grid squares, the component "snaps" in place and fills the grid, making it simple to size and align rows and columns of new components in the grid. When the grid size is more than 15 px, the "fill the square" behavior is activated.

Report level component position

This option governs the interplay between report-level elements and those found on the page as a whole.

Top positions report-level components in front of all other components (similar to using the Arrange > Order > Bring to front menu).

Bottom positions report-level components behind all other components (similar to using the Arrange > Order > Send to back menu).