Create a time series plot of a single Y variable with groups

In the Time Series Plot dialog box, complete the following steps to specify the data for your graph. If your data are arranged differently than described below, go to Choose a time series plot.

  1. In Y variable, enter the column of time-ordered numeric data that you want to graph.
  2. (Optional) In Time scale labels, you can specify a column of labels for the x-axis. The label column should contain one label value for each interval on the x-axis, as shown in the examples that follow.
  3. In Group variable, enter the column of categorical data that defines the groups.
  4. Under Display, specify whether to display the groups as overlapping series (Start all at the same time) or as consecutive stages (Plot in consecutive stages).
Example for Start all at the same time

A technician tracks the number of parts that are produced on two different machines each day. The technician records the number of parts in the Parts column and identifies the machine that made the parts in the Machine column. The Y variable is Parts and the group variable is Machine. The technician enters each date only once in the Date labels column to use as the time scale labels.

Because data for both machines was collected over the same period of time, the technician chooses Start all at the same time. The graph shows the number of parts that were produced on each machine each day.

Note

The Time scale labels column must contain only one label value for each interval on the x-axis.

C1 C2
Parts Machine
5196 1
4367 2
4563 1
... ...
C4
Date labels
May 22
May 23
May 24
...
Example for Plot in consecutive stages

A manager tracks the number of calls that sales representatives receive during two stages of an advertising campaign. Each day, the manager records the number of calls in the Calls column and identifies the stage of the campaign in the Stage column. The Y variable is Calls and the group variable is Stage. The manager also enters the dates in the Date labels column to use as the time scale labels.

Because all of the stage 1 data was collected before the stage 2 data, the manager chooses Plot in consecutive stages. The graph shows that the number of calls that were received each day during both phases of the campaign.

C1 C2 C3
Calls Stage Date labels
428 1 Mar 23
1042 1 Mar 24
... ... ...
1462 2 Apr 7
1032 2 Apr 8
... ... ...
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