A beginner's guide to Tableau Public

A step-by-step guide to get you started on your own data viz journey.

Have you been thinking about joining Tableau Public to grow your data skills but aren’t sure how to get started? Perhaps you’ve been following some of our Visionaries and Ambassadors but feel too intimidated to publicly show off your own data visualisations? Or maybe you’re just trying to understand the benefits of Tableau Public and want to know a bit more.

No matter where you’re at in your data visualisation journey, we’re here for you. This is the first in a series of step-by-step guides to help you get the most out of Tableau Public – from creating your profile all the way publishing your own data visualisations with confidence!

What is Tableau Public?

Tableau Public is a free platform that allows you to explore, create and share interactive visualisations using publicly available data online. That last part is important. Make sure the data you share on Public is, well, available for public consumption. (If you have private data you want to analyse or share, check out Tableau’s other offerings.) 

Playing with data in Tableau Public will help you develop data skills and learn from a community of like-minded data enthusiasts – or, as we like to call them, the DataFam. Whether it’s discovering data visualisations on the topics you're passionate about (neatly categorised on our homepage) or joining one of the Tableau Community Projects, Tableau Public has the tools to help you become a data rockstar.

Some of the data visualisations you’ll see featured as Viz of the Day

I want to start creating and browsing data visualisations. How do I sign up?

You can sign up for Tableau Public by clicking this link or by navigating to the Sign In button at the top of any page on tableaupublic.com. Once you’ve completed the sign-up form, you’re ready to start building out your profile.

Signing up for a Tableau Public account is always free and takes less than 60 seconds

How do I build a strong profile page?

1. Add a photo 

We recommend uploading a profile photo. A good profile photo should be high resolution, have only you in the photo and be primarily of your face. Pro tip: When considering what type of photo to upload, select a photo that you would be comfortable sharing with your professional network as you become more familiar with Tableau Public and want to show off your skills!

2. List your organisation

If you’re currently employed and wish to share the name of your employer, you can include it in the Organisation field. 

3. Write a short bio

Share who you are with the Tableau Community. Tell us who you are, where you’re from, and what you’re about. You can also include hashtags about your interests and/or community projects you’re most interested in

4. Link to more information about you

You can add links to your social media accounts to help you connect with others in the community. You can also include links to your personal website, blog or company website. 

5. Let the world know if you're available for hire

If you choose, you can enable the Hire Me Button on your Tableau Public profile to let potential employers know you’re available for work opportunities. Hiring managers will be able to email you directly. You can enable or disable this feature at any time. Pro tip: Once you build out your profile and start sharing visualisations, this is a great way to get noticed by hiring managers! To learn more about how our authors get hired, check out Idris Akilapa’s story.

6. Share your location

We are a global community. If so inclined, you can also add your location so that other community members can see where you are located and connect with the DataFam near you. 

Profiles of a few current Tableau Public authors

I’ve completed my Tableau Public profile. What’s next?

Now that you’ve created an impressive profile, it’s time to build your network and explore the work of others in the community. Here are a few tips to get you started:

  1. Subscribe to Viz of the Day. Start receiving stunning data visualisations straight to your inbox every day by subscribing to this almost-every-weekday email.
  2. Get inspired by exploring vizzes on the Tableau Public homepage. The homepage is where you’ll find a collection of data visualisations across a variety of different topics including Viz of the Day, Business Dashboards, Trending, News and Events, Social Impact, Sports and Fitness, and more.
  3. Search our repository of data visualisations to find exactly what you're looking for. With the largest repository of data visualisations in the world to learn from, Tableau Public makes developing data skills easy. Simply click the magnifying glass in the upper right-hand corner of TableauPublic.com to get started.
  4. Connect with our Visionaries and Ambassadors on social. Build relationships within the community by following our Visionaries and Ambassadors on Twitter
  5. Make sure to follow our Featured Authors on Tableau Public. Every few weeks, we feature a new group of data viz rockstars from around the world who are crushing it. 

Pro tip: Once you start following other Tableau Public Authors, data visualisations published to their profile will start to populate a custom category on the Tableau Public homepage called “From Your Network”. Make sure you’re following authors and signed in to see the custom content created just for you.

Congratulations! By following these steps you are now a member of the Tableau Public Community. Well done, DataFam! In our next blog in this series, we will focus on how to get started learning Tableau and creating your own visualisations. To stay up to date, follow us on Twitter