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List Box in Dashboard: When, Where, and How to Use One

List Box in Dashboard: When, Where, and How to Use One

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    In user interface design, the list box is an essential element for giving users a way to select items. It is an especially useful tool in dashboards. With it, dashboard designers can list multiple items in one place, preserving valuable screen space and simplifying user selections. In this blog, we will explore the list box, its configuration in Bold BI, best practices for using it, and a few use cases.

    Understanding the list box visual

    A list box is a graphical element that displays a list of items. It is often used to allow users to select or filter items and reflect that selection in other visualizations.

    List Box

    How to configure a list box visual in Bold BI

    1. In the Dashboard Designer, drag and drop the List Box widget from the visualization panel to the design canvas.
    2. Click the Settings icon on the widget. This will open the Properties panel.
    3. In the Basic Settings group, select the Enable Multiselect option to allow the widget to be used for filter selection.
    4. Assign data to the widget and customize it as needed.
    5. Preview the widget and adjust its settings for clarity and visual appeal.

    The following GIF shows the configuration process.

    List box configuration process

    To learn more about the configuration process, read our documentation.

    When to use a list box visual

    • Selecting categorical data.
    • Filtering a large dataset.
    • Selecting multiple items simultaneously.
    • Displaying items of similar data type.

    When not to use a list box visual

    • Presenting lengthy content.
    • Providing limited options.
    • Presenting complex or hierarchical data.
    • Visualizing quantitative data.

    Best practices for using a list box in dashboard

    • Keep it simple: Use clear, concise content for the list box items so that users understand the options clearly.
    • Enable multiselection: If the context requires it, allow users to select multiple items.
    • Sorting: Arrange items logically—alphabetically, numerically, or by frequency or relevance.
    • Default selection: Enable a default selection. This gives users a starting point for working with the widget.

    Use cases for a list box in dashboard

    Let’s take a look at how list boxes are used in several sample Bold BI dashboards.


    The Sales Performance Dashboard’s list box facilitates efficient visualization of product categories across the other widgets in the dashboard. With it, sales teams can quickly select and analyze data. The list box lists the product categories that can be visualized in the other widgets. Any combination of categories can be selected simultaneously in the list box. The dashboard with all categories in the list box selected is shown in the following figure.

    Sales Performance Dashboard with All Selections in the Product Category


    The list box in our SurveyMonkey Survey Overview Dashboard lets surveyors choose which survey data to visualize in the dashboard. With it, they can quickly switch between data sets to analyze response rates for various surveys. The following figure shows the survey dashboard with all available surveys selected in the list box and the corresponding data visualized in the other widgets.

    SurveyMonkey Survey Overview Dashboard with All Selections in the Survey List

    Property management

    In our Property Management Dashboard, the list box allows property managers to easily select the properties whose data they want to visualize and inspect. The dashboard provides insights into gross income, net income, and tenant turnover rates, making it easier to monitor tenant satisfaction and overall income. The following figure shows the dashboard with just a few properties selected in the list box.

    Property Management Dashboard Visualizing Selected Properties


    In our Higher Education Enrollment and Retention Dashboard, the list box lets administrators choose fields of study whose data they want to analyze. The dashboard provides insights on admission rates, enrollment, and retention rates so that campus resources can be efficiently allocated. The following figure showcases the dashboard with just one field of study selected in the list box.

    Higher Education Enrollment and Retention Dashboard Visualizing Data for One Field of Study

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    A list box in a dashboard gives users intuitive selection and filtering interfaces, encouraging data exploration and analysis. Explore the capabilities of list boxes in dashboards today with a free 15-day trial of Bold BI. For more information, visit our website or contact our support team.

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