Airtable is a fantastic tool for storing, organizing, and managing data, but looking at its spreadsheet-database interface isn’t always enjoyable or clear. This step-by-step guide shows you four methods:
How to create dashboards with Airtable Interface Designer
To help users create graphs, charts, and other visualizations from their Airtable data, Airtable released its Interface Designer, an easy-to-use tool that allows you to create your first dashboard in 5 to 10 minutes.
The Interface Designer is available on the free plan, but some features, such as granular permissions and advanced controls, are reserved for paid plans starting at $20/month.
Follow the next steps to learn how to create your dashboard with Interface Designer.
Click on “Interfaces”
In your Airtable base, click on the “Interfaces” tab at the top of the screen.
Click on “Start building”
On this page, you have the opportunity to learn more about Interface Designer. Once you’re ready, click the “Start building” button.
Choose your interface layout
Airtable gives you the choice between various layouts for your interface: List, galley, kanban, calendar, form, and more. For this example, let’s select “Dashboard” and click “Next”.
Connect to a table
Select a table from your base as a data source for your dashboard, then press “Next”.
Add elements to your dashboard
Select elements from the list to display in your dashboard. You have the choice to insert charts (line, pie, bar, scatter, donut, etc.), numbers, and filters and conditions to the displayed data. You’ll be able to modify it further later on. Once you’re happy with this first version, click on “Next.”
Name your dashboard
Enter your dashboard name in the “Name” field, and press “Finish” to complete the setup!
Customize your Airtable Interface Designer dashboard
You now have a first iteration of a dashboard based on the setup steps we just completed. Customizing it is relatively easy, thanks to a drag-and-drop interface that doesn’t require technical skills. To learn how to customize your interface, check out the following steps.
Add new elements to your dashboard
Add new elements to your dashboard by clicking on the “+ Add element” button in the bottom-left corner of your interface. From there, you’ll be able to pick from various elements: text, dividers, buttons, numbers, filters, and more.
Add a page to your interface
Click on “Add page” in the screen's right panel to add another page to your interface. This will take you to the same setup process that you started with.
Preview your dashboard
By clicking on the “Preview” button in the top-left corner, you’ll be able to get a look at your dashboard as normal users will see it once published.
Click on “Publish”
Once you’re happy with your dashboard, hit the “Publish” button on the top-right corner! You’ll be invited to share the interface if you so wish.
How to create dashboards using an Airtable Marketplace extension
Airtable users are able to find and install extensions directly from the Airtable Marketplace. These extensions are free but might need to be connected to other tools that require a subscription, so the price will vary.
For the most part, adding an extension through the marketplace is a straightforward process, taking around 5 minutes to set up.
Browse the various categories or enter a keyword in the search field to find an extension for your base. For this example, we chose to try “Animated Charts & Graphs Maker”, an extension allowing you to create data visualizations.
Click on “Add extension”
On the extension page, read the description and click on “Add extension” whenever you’re ready to try it out.
Choose your base and click on “Add extension”
Let’s add the extension to the proper base you want to use.
Setup the extension
This step will be different for each extension, but usually, you’ll be invited to follow a series of steps to set it up. Follow the guide on your screen.
Customize your base using your extension
The extension panel will be on the right side of your screen. The scope of possibilities is different from one extension to the other, play around and you might find the right tool for you to create your dashboard.
How to create dashboards for your Airtable data using Softr
Using Softr, you are able to create interfaces and data visualization based on Airtable data: websites, client portals, internal tools, and of course, dashboards. The entire process will take you around 10 minutes and is entirely free using Softr’s free plan.
Unlike Airtable Interface Designer, Softr allows you to share your dashboard publicly without putting your data at risk. If you want to share your dashboard with specific people, then Softr allows your users to authenticate using any of the available options: Sign-in with SSO, SMS, Google, or with a custom code.
Softr also offers you templates, combined with design flexibility, so you don’t have to start your dashboard from scratch.
Follow the next steps to create a dashboard based on Airtable data.
Login to Softr
Login to your Softr account using your credentials or with Google, or create a free account.
Click on “New application”
The first step is to create an application on Softr. For the sake of this example, let’s start with a template that will give us a great Airtable base to work on, and a corresponding application on Softr.
Select a template
You can use the “search” field or browse the available templates. For this example, we chose to use the “Sales KPIs” dashboard.
Click on “Use Template”
Let’s get started with our template.
Click on “Airtable”
We want to use Airtable as a data source.
Choose your authentication method
You have the choice between using a personal access token or your API key.
Click on “Copy base to your Airtable account”
Let's copy this base on our Airtable account. This will redirect you to Airtable, where you can click “Add base” to complete the initial setup process.
Your Softr dashboard is now synced with Airtable data
Changes in the Airtable data will be reflected in your new dashboard.
Customize your Softr dashboard
There are plenty of things you can do on Softr to further customize your new dashboard. Check out the following steps.
Add new blocks to your dashboard
Your dashboard can be customized with entirely new blocks, either dynamic or statics, including forms. Lists, tables. Charts, kanban, and more. To do so, click on “Add block” and select which block you want to add.
Set permissions for each block
By clicking on individual blocks and selecting the “visibility” tab, you are able to determine who should be able to see the content of that block. This is particularly useful for sensitive information for example.
When ready, click on “Publish” to set your dashboard live
Whenever you’re ready to set your dashboard live into the world, click on “Publish”, set your customer domain and/or subdomain and hit “Publish” again.
Making sense of data is tough when all you can see are endless rows.
Get dynamic data visualization with Softr graphs and charts.