Adding Images to Your Tables in Data Studio

  • Image Function Feature Image

Adding Images to Your Tables in Data Studio

Did you know that your brain processes visuals more quickly than text or numbers? For this reason, including images in your dashboards and reports can make them easier to read and interpret by adding context to the data.

Since the launch of Google Data Studio, you have been able to insert image components into reports. However, with the new IMAGE function available for use in calculated fields, you can include images as part of your dataset and display them in tables. You could use this function to show video thumbnails, product photos, or other relevant images alongside your data.

Read on to learn how to use the IMAGE function in Data Studio and to see an example use case.

Using the IMAGE function in Data Studio:

  1. In your data source, create a new calculated field.
  2. Enter the image function as follows: IMAGE( Image URL, Alternative Text), where Image URL is a dynamically constructed URL to the relevant web-hosted image file and Alternative Text is the “alt” text for the image.
    • For example, using the Google Merchandise Store demo account in GA, we can retrieve product images using the formula:
      IMAGE(CONCAT('', Product SKU, '.jpg'), Product)
    • This formula can be used as a template when recreating the dimension with your own data. The CONCAT function is used with the IMAGE function to build a complete URL out of a constant string and the Product SKU, as this is how the product image filenames are structured on the Google Merchandise Store.
  3. In your report, create a table. Select your newly-created image dimension. Also select other relevant dimensions and metrics to accompany your image.
    • For example, in our ecommerce product example, we selected Product, Product Revenue, Quantity, and Avg. Price.

Here is the finished example of product images from the Google Merchandise Store. The images can more easily help the viewer determine which product they are looking at, instead of reading only the product name.

Currently, there are limited formatting options available for images in tables. There is no way to adjust the alignment of the image relative to data in other cells. By default, Data Studio aligns text to the top of the row. Also, the only way to adjust the size of the image is by resizing the column width. Hopefully, sizing and alignment options for images will become available in the near future.

Do you have other use cases for images in tables? Let us know in the comments!

If you’ve found this post helpful, check out the other posts in our Data Studio series:
1. Tracking Your Data Studio Dashboards in Google Analytics
2. How to Share a Data Studio Report
3. Google Analytics Dashboard Template for Data Studio
4. Calculating Goal Flow Conversion Rate in Data Studio
5. Embedding Links in Data Studio
6. Simple Visualizations in Data Studio
7. Custom Channel Groupings in Data Studio
8. Calculating Percent of Total in Data Studio
9. Tips for Using RegEx in Data Studio
10. Data Studio Connectors from a Galaxy Far, Far Away
11. Audit Your Google Analytics Implementation with Data Studio

By |2017-12-18T15:04:01-05:00December 7th, 2017|4 Comments


  1. SugaP January 24, 2018 at 9:14 pm - Reply

    Now I am creating a simple machine learning application. Is it possible to use jpg files in my Google Storage on Data Studio?

    • Marc Soares January 25, 2018 at 9:45 am - Reply

      The IMAGE function requires the image URL, as shown in step 2. You will need a direct URL to the file. I don’t think Google Drive can provide you with direct links to images, so that likely won’t work. Does that answer your question?

  2. Hazem April 14, 2020 at 5:16 pm - Reply

    Hello Marc,

    So do mean that even the “shared link” generated by google drive won’t work?

    I have been struggling today to get images from my GD on data studio dashboard!! Tried the URL method and the image field method with no luck!! Still getting the broken link icon instea of the picture!!

    • Marc Soares April 17, 2020 at 12:37 pm - Reply

      Hi Hazem. Yes, shared links from Google Drive will not work with the IMAGE function. The URL needs to link directly to the image file, i.e. it needs to have an image extension like .jpg or .png.

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