Chapter 10 Categorical Data

10.1 Introduction

Handling categorical/qualitative data is integral to data analysis. Almost every data science project involves working with categorical data and students should know how to store, summarize, visualize & manipulate such data. Working with categorical data is different from working with numbers or text. In this chapter, we will understand categorical data and explore the rich set of functions (built-in & through packages) provided by R for working with such data. The word categorical is used interchangeably with qualitative.

10.1.1 Data Types

Before we begin our deep dive on categorical data, let us get a quick overview of different data types.

In the chart above, we can see that data can be primarily classified into qualitative or quantitative. Qualitative data consists of labels or names. Quantitative data, on the other hand, consists of numbers and indicate how much or how many. This brings us to the next level of classification:

  • discrete
  • continuous

In the chart, we can observe that qualitative data is always discrete where as quantitative data may be discrete or continuous. Qualitative data is further classified into

  • nominal
  • ordinal

First, we will understand discrete and continuous data, and then proceed to explore nominal and ordinal data.

Discrete Data

Discrete data arises in situations where counting is involved. It can take on only a finite number of values and cannot be divided into smaller parts. For example, let us consider the number of students in a class. We can have 5 0r 10 students but not 5.5 students (we can’t have half a student).

Continuous Data

Continuous data arises in situations where measuring is involved. It can take any numeric value in a specified range and can be divided into smaller parts and still have meaning. Examples include money, temperature, length, volume etc.

10.1.2 Categorical Data

Since our interest is in categorical data, we will spend more time understanding the different types of categorical data through various examples. Let us begin by formally defining categorical data:

  • it is always discrete
  • it may be divided into groups
  • consists of names or labels
  • takes on limited & fixed number of possible values
  • arises in situation when counting is involved
  • analysis generally involves the use of data tables

10.1.3 Dichotomous

A categorical variable that can take on exactly two values is termed as binary or dichotomous variable.

10.1.4 Polychotomous

Categorical variables with more than two possible values are called polychotomous variables.

10.1.5 Ordinal

In ordinal data, the categories can be ordered or ranked. Examples include

  • socio-economic status
  • education level
  • income level
  • satisfaction rating

While we can rank the categories, we cannot assign a value to them. For example, in satisfaction ranking, we cannot say that like is twice as positive as dislike i.e. we are unable to say how much they differ from each other. While the order or rank of data is meaningful, the difference between two pieces of data cannot be measured/determined or are meaningless. Ordinal data provide information about relative comparisons, but not the magnitude of the differences.

10.1.6 Nominal

Nominal data do not have an intrinsic order and cannot be ordered or measured. Examples include

  • blood group
  • gender
  • religion
  • color

Categorical data are sometimes coded with numbers, with those numbers replacing names. Although such numbers might appear to be quantitative, they are actually categorical data. When they do take numerical values, those numbers do not have any mathematical meaning. Examples include months expressed in numbers.

10.1.7 Summary

  • Data can be qualitative or quantitative.
  • Qualitative data is always discrete.
  • Dichotomous data consists of only 2 groups/levels.
  • Polychotomous data consists of more than 2 groups/levels.
  • Nominal data do not have an intrinsic order.
  • In ordinal data
    • categories can be ordered or ranked
    • the difference between the categories cannot be determined

10.1.8 Your Turn…

  1. State whether the following are quantitative or qualitative
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Annual Sales
  • Weight
  • Education Level
  • Vehicle Type
  • Height
  • Ice Cream Flavor
  • Job/Work Experience
  • Blood Group
  • Color
  • Mode of Payment
  1. State whether the following are dichotomous or polychotomous
  • Heads / Tails
  • Blood Group
  • Transportation Mode
  • Rich / Poor
  • Democrat / Republican
  • Education Level
  • Gender
  • Pass / Fail
  • Yes / No
  • Positive / Negative
  1. State whether the following are nominal or ordinal
  • STD Codes
  • Prepaid / Postpaid
  • Hotel Ratings
  • Smart Phone Brands
  • Student Grades
  • Cellular Operator
  • ISPs (Internet Service Providers)
  • Occupation
  • Bank Account Number
  • Class of Travel
  • Military Rank

10.2 Case Study

As is the practice, throughout this chapter, we will work on a case study related to an e-commerce firm. As most of you would already be aware, a lot of data is captured when you go on the internet by the websites you browse as well as by third party cookies. Data collected is then used to display ads as well as to feed to recommendation algorithms.

The data used in the case study represents the basic information that is captured when users visit any website. It closely resembles real world data for an e-commerce store. We will try to generate insights about the visitors to be used by an imaginary marketing team for better targeting and promotion. The case study data set can be imported using the RStudio IDE or R code.

10.2.1 Data

The data set is available in both CSV & RDS formats.

CSV

If you want to specify the data types while reading the data, use the readr package. We have explored how to import data into R in a previous chapter. We will read a subset of columns from the data set (it has 20 columns) which will cover both nominal and ordinal data types. To import the data, we will use the read_csv() function. The first input is the name of the data set, analytics.csv. Ensure that the name is enclosed in single/double quotes.

read_csv("analytics_raw.csv", 
         col_types = cols_only(device = col_factor(levels = c("Desktop", "Tablet", "Mobile")), 
                               gender = col_factor(levels = c("female", "male", "NA")), 
                               user_rating = col_factor(levels = c("1", "2", "3", "4", "5"),
                                                        ordered = TRUE)))
## Warning: Missing column names filled in: 'X1' [1]
## # A tibble: 244,398 x 3
##    device  gender user_rating
##    <fct>   <fct>  <ord>      
##  1 Desktop female 4          
##  2 Mobile  <NA>   5          
##  3 Desktop <NA>   4          
##  4 Desktop <NA>   5          
##  5 Desktop <NA>   4          
##  6 Mobile  <NA>   4          
##  7 Desktop <NA>   4          
##  8 Desktop <NA>   4          
##  9 Desktop female 5          
## 10 Desktop <NA>   4          
## # ... with 244,388 more rows

Since we are specifying the column data types while importing the data, we will use the col_types argument to list out the data types. As we are reading in a subset of the columns and not all of them, we will use the cols_only() function indicating that only the columns specified must be read in and not all of them.

Categorical data and the levels/groups are specified using the col_factor() function. Use the levels argument to specify the levels/groups and the ordered argument to indicate if the data is ordinal. By default, it is set to FALSE, change this to TRUE if the column is ordinal.

RDS

The .rds file can be read using readRDS().

data <- readRDS('analytics.rds')
head(data)
## # A tibble: 6 x 19
##   device  os        browser user_type         channel        gender frequency
##   <fct>   <fct>     <fct>   <fct>             <fct>          <fct>      <dbl>
## 1 Desktop Windows   Chrome  New Visitor       Organic Search female         1
## 2 Mobile  iOS       Safari  Returning Visitor Organic Search <NA>           3
## 3 Desktop Chrome OS Chrome  New Visitor       Direct         <NA>           1
## 4 Desktop Macintosh Chrome  Returning Visitor Organic Search <NA>           2
## 5 Desktop Macintosh Chrome  Returning Visitor Referral       <NA>           5
## 6 Mobile  Android   Chrome  New Visitor       Organic Search <NA>           1
##   recency page_depth hour_of_day   age duration landing_page  exit_page    
##     <dbl>      <dbl> <chr>       <dbl>    <dbl> <fct>         <fct>        
## 1       0          1 02             64        0 Home          Home         
## 2       1          1 20             NA        0 Accessories   Accessories  
## 3       0          5 05             NA      238 Sign In       Shop by Brand
## 4       0          1 17             NA        0 Apparel       Apparel      
## 5       8          1 04             NA        0 Shop by Brand Shop by Brand
## 6       0          5 00             NA      110 Apparel       Lifestyle    
##   country        quantity revenue purchase_flag user_rating
##   <fct>             <dbl>   <dbl> <lgl>               <dbl>
## 1 France                0       0 FALSE                   4
## 2 Norway                0       0 FALSE                   5
## 3 India                 0       0 FALSE                   4
## 4 Ukraine               0       0 FALSE                   5
## 5 Chile                 0       0 FALSE                   4
## 6 United Kingdom        0       0 FALSE                   4

10.2.2 Data Dictionary

Column Description
device Device used to browse the website
os Operating system of the device
browser Browser used to visit the website
user_type New or returning visitor
channel Source of traffic
gender Gender of the visitor
frequency Count of visits to the website
recency Number of days since last visit
page_depth Number of website pages browsed
hour_of_day Hour of day
age Age of the visitor
duration Time spent on the website (in seconds)
landing_page Page on which visitor landed
exit_page Page on which visitor exited
country Country of origin
city City of the visitor
quantity Number of units purchased
revenue Total revenue
purchase_flag Whether the visitor checked out?
user_rating Website UI rating given by visitor

10.3 Factors

In this very important section, we will learn how R

  • stores categorical data
  • checks if given data is categorical
  • converts other data types to factor
  • handles missing values in categorical data
  • specifies the orders of the categories/levels
  • stores ordinal data

10.3.1 Introduction

In R, categorical data is stored as factor. Before we explore the factor family of functions, let us generate the sample data we will use in this module. We will generate the device column from the case study data set using the sample() function. We provide the following inputs to generate the data:

  • values from which the data must be generated
  • the size of the sample
  • indicate if the values must be repeated (TRUE/FALSE)
device <- sample(c("Desktop", "Mobile", "Tablet"), size = 25, replace = TRUE)
device
##  [1] "Tablet"  "Mobile"  "Tablet"  "Mobile"  "Mobile"  "Desktop" "Tablet" 
##  [8] "Tablet"  "Tablet"  "Mobile"  "Desktop" "Tablet"  "Mobile"  "Desktop"
## [15] "Desktop" "Desktop" "Tablet"  "Tablet"  "Desktop" "Desktop" "Mobile" 
## [22] "Desktop" "Desktop" "Tablet"  "Tablet"

10.3.2 Membership Testing

Great! We have successfully generated the sample data and along the way learnt a new R function for sampling. First, let us check if the sample is a factor using the membership function is.factor().

is.factor(device)
## [1] FALSE

Membership testing functions always have the prefix is_ and return only logical values. If the object is a member of the specified class, they return TRUE else FALSE. Since our sample data is not stored as a factor, R has returned FALSE.

10.3.3 Coercion

Let us try to coerce it into factor using the coercion function as.factor().

as.factor(device)
##  [1] Tablet  Mobile  Tablet  Mobile  Mobile  Desktop Tablet  Tablet  Tablet 
## [10] Mobile  Desktop Tablet  Mobile  Desktop Desktop Desktop Tablet  Tablet 
## [19] Desktop Desktop Mobile  Desktop Desktop Tablet  Tablet 
## Levels: Desktop Mobile Tablet

Do you spot any difference in the output? In the last line, it displays the levels or categories of the variable. Don’t worry if you didn’t spot it. We are just getting started and you will pick it up by the end of this section. Another function that can be used to coerce data into factor is as_factor() from the forcats package.

as_factor(device)
##  [1] Tablet  Mobile  Tablet  Mobile  Mobile  Desktop Tablet  Tablet  Tablet 
## [10] Mobile  Desktop Tablet  Mobile  Desktop Desktop Desktop Tablet  Tablet 
## [19] Desktop Desktop Mobile  Desktop Desktop Tablet  Tablet 
## Levels: Tablet Mobile Desktop

Did you notice any difference between these two functions? Focus on the last line of the output where the levels are displayed. Now observe the order of the levels. as.factor() displays levels in the alphabetical order whereas as_factor() displays them in order of appearance in the data. Mobile, followed by Tablet, and then Desktop. If you look at the data, they appear in the same order.

10.3.4 Factor Function

If you want finer control while creating factors, use the factor() function. as.factor() should suffice in most cases but use factor() when you want to:

  • specify levels
  • modify labels
  • include NA as a level/category
  • create ordered factors
  • specify order of levels

The first input is a vector, usually a numeric or character vector with a small number of unique values. In our example, it is a character vector of length 25 (i.e. 25 values) but 3 unique values.

factor(device)
##  [1] Tablet  Mobile  Tablet  Mobile  Mobile  Desktop Tablet  Tablet  Tablet 
## [10] Mobile  Desktop Tablet  Mobile  Desktop Desktop Desktop Tablet  Tablet 
## [19] Desktop Desktop Mobile  Desktop Desktop Tablet  Tablet 
## Levels: Desktop Mobile Tablet

If you want to specify the levels or categories, use the levels argument.

factor(device, levels = c("Desktop", "Mobile", "Tablet"))
##  [1] Tablet  Mobile  Tablet  Mobile  Mobile  Desktop Tablet  Tablet  Tablet 
## [10] Mobile  Desktop Tablet  Mobile  Desktop Desktop Desktop Tablet  Tablet 
## [19] Desktop Desktop Mobile  Desktop Desktop Tablet  Tablet 
## Levels: Desktop Mobile Tablet

Levels not specified will be replaced by NA. Let us specify only Desktop and Mobile as the levels in the device column and see what happens.

factor(device, levels = c("Desktop", "Mobile"))
##  [1] <NA>    Mobile  <NA>    Mobile  Mobile  Desktop <NA>    <NA>    <NA>   
## [10] Mobile  Desktop <NA>    Mobile  Desktop Desktop Desktop <NA>    <NA>   
## [19] Desktop Desktop Mobile  Desktop Desktop <NA>    <NA>   
## Levels: Desktop Mobile

As you can see, Tablet has been replaced by NA.

10.3.5 Modify Labels

You can change the labels of the levels using the labels argument. The labels must be in the same order as the levels. We will modify the labels to Desk, Mob & Tab for Desktop, Mobile & Tablet respectively.

factor(device, 
       levels = c("Desktop", "Mobile", "Tablet"),
       labels = c("Desk", "Mob", "Tab"))
##  [1] Tab  Mob  Tab  Mob  Mob  Desk Tab  Tab  Tab  Mob  Desk Tab  Mob  Desk Desk
## [16] Desk Tab  Tab  Desk Desk Mob  Desk Desk Tab  Tab 
## Levels: Desk Mob Tab

You can see that not only the values but the levels are also modified.

10.3.6 Missing Values

Let us regenerate the device column but include some missing values (NA) deliberately to see how factor() handles them.

# sample with missing values
device <- sample(c("Desktop", "Mobile", "Tablet", NA), size = 25, replace = TRUE)
device
##  [1] NA        "Desktop" NA        "Tablet"  "Tablet"  "Desktop" "Desktop"
##  [8] "Tablet"  "Tablet"  "Desktop" "Mobile"  "Desktop" "Mobile"  NA       
## [15] "Tablet"  "Tablet"  NA        NA        "Desktop" "Tablet"  "Tablet" 
## [22] "Tablet"  "Tablet"  "Mobile"  "Mobile"
# store as categorical data
factor(device)
##  [1] <NA>    Desktop <NA>    Tablet  Tablet  Desktop Desktop Tablet  Tablet 
## [10] Desktop Mobile  Desktop Mobile  <NA>    Tablet  Tablet  <NA>    <NA>   
## [19] Desktop Tablet  Tablet  Tablet  Tablet  Mobile  Mobile 
## Levels: Desktop Mobile Tablet

NA is not shown as one of the levels. Why does this happen? By default, it will ignore them. If you look at the arguments of the factor() function, the exclude argument is set to NA by default i.e. NA is excluded automatically. What should we do to ensure that NA is also treated as a level? In order to treat NA as a level, set the exclude argument to NULL.

factor(device, exclude = NULL)
##  [1] <NA>    Desktop <NA>    Tablet  Tablet  Desktop Desktop Tablet  Tablet 
## [10] Desktop Mobile  Desktop Mobile  <NA>    Tablet  Tablet  <NA>    <NA>   
## [19] Desktop Tablet  Tablet  Tablet  Tablet  Mobile  Mobile 
## Levels: Desktop Mobile Tablet <NA>

As you can see, NA is displayed as one of the levels in the data.

10.3.7 Ordered Factors

So far, we have been looking at nominal data. Let us now explore how R handles ordered data. We will generate a new data set of satisfaction ratings to use in this section. Satisfaction ratings are widely used to measure a customer’s satisfaction with an organization, service or a product.

rating <- sample(c("Dislike", "Neutral", "Like"), size = 25, replace = TRUE)
rating
##  [1] "Dislike" "Neutral" "Like"    "Like"    "Neutral" "Neutral" "Like"   
##  [8] "Dislike" "Neutral" "Neutral" "Like"    "Like"    "Like"    "Dislike"
## [15] "Dislike" "Neutral" "Dislike" "Neutral" "Like"    "Like"    "Neutral"
## [22] "Dislike" "Neutral" "Like"    "Dislike"

It consists of three values Dislike, Neutral & Like in that order. You can see that there is an intrinsic order here. Like is better than neutral which in turn is better than dislike. While we can order them, we can’t quantify the difference between them. We can’t say neutral is so many times better than dislike.

Membership Testing

As we did earlier, let us check if the data is ordered using the membership function is.ordered().

is.ordered(rating)
## [1] FALSE

R returns FALSE as the variable rating is not ordered. Let us use as.ordered() to coerce it into an ordered factor.

as.ordered(rating)
##  [1] Dislike Neutral Like    Like    Neutral Neutral Like    Dislike Neutral
## [10] Neutral Like    Like    Like    Dislike Dislike Neutral Dislike Neutral
## [19] Like    Like    Neutral Dislike Neutral Like    Dislike
## Levels: Dislike < Like < Neutral

Look at the last line where the levels are displayed. In case of ordered factors, you will see a < between the labels. This is used to indicate the order of the levels. Now rating is both an ordered but the order of the levels is not correct. It should be Dislike < Neutral < Like but is displayed in order of appearance in the data. Let us use the factor() function since we need more control over how the levels are ranked and set the ordered argument to TRUE.

factor(rating, ordered = TRUE)
##  [1] Dislike Neutral Like    Like    Neutral Neutral Like    Dislike Neutral
## [10] Neutral Like    Like    Like    Dislike Dislike Neutral Dislike Neutral
## [19] Like    Like    Neutral Dislike Neutral Like    Dislike
## Levels: Dislike < Like < Neutral

The ranking of the levels has not changed and is still the same. Why is this happening? If you observe carefully, the ranking follows the alphabetical order (Desktop, Mobile, Table). The factor() function uses the same order for the levels.

10.3.8 Modify Order of Levels

To change the order/ranking of the levels, we need to specify it using the levels argument. Let us do that in the next example.

factor(rating, levels = c("Dislike", "Neutral", "Like"), ordered = TRUE)
##  [1] Dislike Neutral Like    Like    Neutral Neutral Like    Dislike Neutral
## [10] Neutral Like    Like    Like    Dislike Dislike Neutral Dislike Neutral
## [19] Like    Like    Neutral Dislike Neutral Like    Dislike
## Levels: Dislike < Neutral < Like

Now, you can see that the levels are ranked correctly. The ordered() function can also be used to create ordered factors. Let us recreate the previous example using the ordered() function.

ordered(rating, levels = c("Dislike", "Neutral", "Like"))
##  [1] Dislike Neutral Like    Like    Neutral Neutral Like    Dislike Neutral
## [10] Neutral Like    Like    Like    Dislike Dislike Neutral Dislike Neutral
## [19] Like    Like    Neutral Dislike Neutral Like    Dislike
## Levels: Dislike < Neutral < Like

You can specify levels, modify labels and handle missing values using the ordered() function as well.

10.3.9 Key Functions

10.3.10 Summary

  • R uses factor to handle categorical data.
  • Use as.factor() or as_factor() to coerce other data types to factor.
  • Use is.factor() or is.ordered() to identify factor & ordered factor respectively.
  • Use factor() to
    • specify labels
    • modify labels
    • handle missing data
    • create ordered factors
    • specify order of levels
  • Use ordered() to create ordered factors.

10.3.11 Your Turn…

Use analytics_raw.rds data set to answer the below questions.

  1. Check whether the below variables are factor

    • device
    • page_depth
    • landing_page
  2. Coerce the following variables to type factor

    • device
    • os
    • browser
    • user_type
    • channel
    • gender
    • landing_page
    • exit_page
    • city
    • country
    • user_type
  3. Use only the following levels in the gender column:

    • male
    • female
  4. Include NA as a level in the gender column.

  5. Change label of NA to missing in the gender column.

  6. Change the labels of the levels in user_type column to

    • New
    • Returning
  7. Check if the user_rating column is ordered. If not, coerce it to type ordered factor.

10.3.12 Summarize

10.3.13 Introduction

Categorical data cannot be summarized in the same way as numeric data. It does not make sense to look at range, standard deviation etc. since data consists of a few distinct values only. So how do we summarize such data? We can look at

  • count/frequency
  • proportion
  • cumulative frequency
  • cross table
  • contingency table etc.

In this section, we will explore the above ways of summarizing categorical data. We will also spend some time learning about tables as you will be using them extensively while working with categorical data. R has many packages for tabulating data and we list and explore all of them in the last section of this chapter.

10.3.14 Number of Categories

From our case study, we want to know the number of devices used to browse the website, the name of the devices and the proportion of traffic they drive to our website. Let us begin with the number of devices. To view the number of groups/categories in a categorical variable, use nlevels().

nlevels(data$device)
## [1] 3

There are 3 categories of devices used by the visitors to browse the website. This can also be used for data sanitization i.e. as an analyst you know that there are only 3 valid categories of device into which any visitor can be classified into. If you see more than 3 categories, you might want to check if there are any issues in data collection or processing. Now that we know there are 3 categories of devices, let us check if they are valid. The levels() function will return the labels of the groups.

10.3.15 Category Names

Knowing the number of levels is useful but not sufficient. levels() is one of the most useful functions when it comes to dealing with categorical data.

levels(data$device)
## [1] "Desktop" "Mobile"  "Tablet"

Other functions that you can use include unique() and fct_unique(). Both these functions will return the unique names/labels along with the levels while levels() returns the labels of the levels.

unique(data$device)
## [1] Desktop Mobile  Tablet 
## Levels: Desktop Mobile Tablet
fct_unique(data$device)
## [1] Desktop Mobile  Tablet 
## Levels: Desktop Mobile Tablet

10.3.16 Names & Counts

So we have checked the number of devices and their names. Let us now examine their distribution i.e. count/frequency. table() and summary() will display the levels and their counts while fct_count() will return a tibble with 2 columns (level & count). It is extremely useful for further data processing or visualization (using ggplot2).

table(data$device)
## 
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet 
##  177282   63482    3634
fct_count(data$device)
## # A tibble: 3 x 2
##   f            n
##   <fct>    <int>
## 1 Desktop 177282
## 2 Mobile   63482
## 3 Tablet    3634
summary(data$device)
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet 
##  177282   63482    3634

10.3.17 Tables

In the previous section, we used the table() function to tabulate categorical data. We will recreate the tabulation for device and store it in a new variable tab.

tab <- table(data$device)
tab
## 
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet 
##  177282   63482    3634

What does this function return? It is not a vector, list, data.frame or matrix. Let us use the class() function to check the class of the object returned by table(). It returns an object of the class table. This is a new type of object. Let us spend some time understanding tables as they are useful for organizing and summarizing categorical data. table is also the most used object when it comes to dealing with categorical data.

The table() function returns the counts of the categories but let us say we want to view the proportion or percentage instead of counts i.e. the proportion or percentage of traffic driven to our website by the different devices. The proportions() or prop.table() function comes in handy in such cases. It takes a table object as input (tab in our case).

prop.table(tab)
## 
##    Desktop     Mobile     Tablet 
## 0.72538237 0.25974844 0.01486919
proportions(tab)
## 
##    Desktop     Mobile     Tablet 
## 0.72538237 0.25974844 0.01486919

To get the percentages, multiply the output by 100. Use the round() function to round the decimal places according to your requirements.

proportions(tab) * 100
## 
##   Desktop    Mobile    Tablet 
## 72.538237 25.974844  1.486919
round(proportions(tab) * 100, 2)
## 
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet 
##   72.54   25.97    1.49

So far, we have used table() to tabulate a single categorical variable. It can be used for a lot more than just tabulating data. We can examine the relationship between two categorical variables as well as create multidimensional tables. Let us look at the relationship between gender and device in our case study. Does gender affect the type of device used? To answer this, we will create a two way or cross table. In the table() function, we can specify multiple variables by separating them with a comma.

tab2 <- table(data$gender, data$device)
tab2
##         
##          Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female   32803   7268    494
##   male     46418  14503    696
##   <NA>     98061  41711   2444

Keep in mind that the order of the variables matter. Rows represent the first variable while column represents the second.

table(data$device, data$gender)
##          
##           female  male  <NA>
##   Desktop  32803 46418 98061
##   Mobile    7268 14503 41711
##   Tablet     494   696  2444

The proportions() function works with two way tables as well.

proportions(tab2)
##         
##              Desktop      Mobile      Tablet
##   female 0.134219593 0.029738378 0.002021293
##   male   0.189927904 0.059341729 0.002847814
##   <NA>   0.401234871 0.170668336 0.010000082
proportions(tab2) * 100
##         
##             Desktop     Mobile     Tablet
##   female 13.4219593  2.9738378  0.2021293
##   male   18.9927904  5.9341729  0.2847814
##   <NA>   40.1234871 17.0668336  1.0000082

We would like to introduce another function at this point of time, margin.table(). What does this function do? It computes the marginal frequencies i.e. the sum of the rows or columns. It takes a table object as input. The margin argument allows us to specify whether we want the sum of rows or columns. 1 indicates rows and 2 indicates columns.

margin.table(tab2, 1) # sum of rows
## 
## female   male   <NA> 
##  40565  61617 142216
margin.table(tab2, 2) # sum of columns
## 
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet 
##  177282   63482    3634

If the margin argument is NULL (which it is by default), the function returns the sum of all cells of the table.

margin.table(tab2)
## [1] 244398

table() does not display row or column labels. It does display the group labels though. Let us revisit the output from tab2. You can observe that while it includes the group labels, the row and column labels are missing. The output from the dimnames() function shows the group labels of the variables but the row & column labels are absent.

dimnames(tab2)
## [[1]]
## [1] "female" "male"   NA      
## 
## [[2]]
## [1] "Desktop" "Mobile"  "Tablet"
names(tab2)
## NULL
names(dimnames(tab2)) 
## [1] "" ""

The output from names(dimnames(tab2)) is also empty. Let us add the variable names as the row & column labels to tab2.

names(dimnames(tab2)) <- c("Gender", "Device")
tab2
##         Device
## Gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female   32803   7268    494
##   male     46418  14503    696
##   <NA>     98061  41711   2444

Now look at the output from tab2 and you can observe the difference. The same is also visible when we run dimnames(tab2).

dimnames(tab2)
## $Gender
## [1] "female" "male"   NA      
## 
## $Device
## [1] "Desktop" "Mobile"  "Tablet"

To add margin totals to the table, use addmargins(). Like proportions() and margin.table(), it also takes a table object as the input.

addmargins(tab2)
##         Device
## Gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet    Sum
##   female   32803   7268    494  40565
##   male     46418  14503    696  61617
##   <NA>     98061  41711   2444 142216
##   Sum     177282  63482   3634 244398

rowSums() returns the row total while colSums() returns the column total. They are similar to margin.table().

rowSums(tab2)
## female   male   <NA> 
##  40565  61617 142216
colSums(tab2)
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet 
##  177282   63482    3634

xtabs() is another way of creating multidimensional tables in R. In comparison to table(), it

  • uses formula notation for input
  • the data argument ensures variable names are referenced instead of using $ i.e. data$variable
  • displays row & column labels by default
tabx <- xtabs(~gender+device, data = data)
tabx
##         device
## gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female   32803   7268    494
##   male     46418  14503    696
##   <NA>     98061  41711   2444

The following functions work with xtabs() as well

  • proportions()
  • margin.table()
  • addmargins()
proportions(tabx)
##         device
## gender       Desktop      Mobile      Tablet
##   female 0.134219593 0.029738378 0.002021293
##   male   0.189927904 0.059341729 0.002847814
##   <NA>   0.401234871 0.170668336 0.010000082
margin.table(tabx, 1)
## gender
## female   male   <NA> 
##  40565  61617 142216
margin.table(tabx, 2)
## device
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet 
##  177282   63482    3634
addmargins(tabx)
##         device
## gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet    Sum
##   female   32803   7268    494  40565
##   male     46418  14503    696  61617
##   <NA>     98061  41711   2444 142216
##   Sum     177282  63482   3634 244398

So far, we have been working with one or two dimensional tables. Both the table() and xtabs() functions are capable of creating multidimensional tables. Keep in mind that multidimensional tables are complex and it becomes increasingly difficult to understand or interpret them.

tab3 <- xtabs(~gender+device+channel, data = data)
tab3
## , , channel = (Other)
## 
##         device
## gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female     786    258      0
##   male      1063    507     19
##   <NA>      2173   1186     81
## 
## , , channel = Affiliates
## 
##         device
## gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female    1314     60      0
##   male      1714    169      0
##   <NA>      3518    548     65
## 
## , , channel = Direct
## 
##         device
## gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female    4785    977     59
##   male      7010   2381     95
##   <NA>     15824   8292    430
## 
## , , channel = Display
## 
##         device
## gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female     123    753    104
##   male       210    491     73
##   <NA>       554    911    156
## 
## , , channel = Organic Search
## 
##         device
## gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female   17109   4480    282
##   male     25016   9563    448
##   <NA>     54071  27223   1476
## 
## , , channel = Paid Search
## 
##         device
## gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female     645    230     22
##   male       887    478     26
##   <NA>      1274    782     51
## 
## , , channel = Referral
## 
##         device
## gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female    7387     74      0
##   male      9251    185      0
##   <NA>     18052    615     51
## 
## , , channel = Social
## 
##         device
## gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female     654    436     27
##   male      1267    729     35
##   <NA>      2595   2154    134

ftable stands for flat tables and is useful for printing attractive tables. It makes it easy to read and interpret multidimensional tables. In the next example, we will use ftable() to print the tables we have created in the previous examples and compare the outputs.

ftable(tabx)
##        device Desktop Mobile Tablet
## gender                             
## female          32803   7268    494
## male            46418  14503    696
## NA              98061  41711   2444
ftable(tab2)
##        Device Desktop Mobile Tablet
## Gender                             
## female          32803   7268    494
## male            46418  14503    696
## NA              98061  41711   2444
ftable(tab3)
##                channel (Other) Affiliates Direct Display Organic Search Paid Search Referral Social
## gender device                                                                                      
## female Desktop             786       1314   4785     123          17109         645     7387    654
##        Mobile              258         60    977     753           4480         230       74    436
##        Tablet                0          0     59     104            282          22        0     27
## male   Desktop            1063       1714   7010     210          25016         887     9251   1267
##        Mobile              507        169   2381     491           9563         478      185    729
##        Tablet               19          0     95      73            448          26        0     35
## NA     Desktop            2173       3518  15824     554          54071        1274    18052   2595
##        Mobile             1186        548   8292     911          27223         782      615   2154
##        Tablet               81         65    430     156           1476          51       51    134

By default, missing values (NAs) are excluded from tables. Let us modify the gender data from our case study a bit and see how the table() function deals with missing values. We won’t explicitly specify NA as a level while recreating the gender data.

gen <- as.factor(as.character(data$gender))
table(gen)
## gen
## female   male 
##  40565  61617

As you can see, table() excludes missing values while tabulating the data. In order to ensure that missing values are also counted, we can use the useNA argument. It can take two values:

  • ifany
  • always

In the first case, it will show NA as a level and the count only if there are missing values in the data. In the second case, it will always show NA as a level irrespective of whether there are missing values in the data or not.

table(gen, useNA = "ifany")
## gen
## female   male   <NA> 
##  40565  61617 142216
table(data$device, useNA = "always")
## 
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet    <NA> 
##  177282   63482    3634       0

In this final section on tables, we will learn how to select/access the different parts of a table. We will use [ operator to select rows and columns of a table (it is similar to selecting data from a data.frame). Below are a few examples:

  • select first row
tab2[1, ]           
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet 
##   32803    7268     494
  • select first column
tab2[, 1]           
## female   male   <NA> 
##  32803  46418  98061
  • select first two rows
tab2[1:2, ]         
##         Device
## Gender   Desktop Mobile Tablet
##   female   32803   7268    494
##   male     46418  14503    696
  • select first two columns
tab2[, 1:2]        
##         Device
## Gender   Desktop Mobile
##   female   32803   7268
##   male     46418  14503
##   <NA>     98061  41711
  • select nth row
tab2[2, ]          
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet 
##   46418   14503     696
  • select nth column
tab2[, 2]          
## female   male   <NA> 
##   7268  14503  41711
  • select row by group label
tab2["female", ]   
## Desktop  Mobile  Tablet 
##   32803    7268     494
  • select column by group label
tab2[, "Mobile"]   
## female   male   <NA> 
##   7268  14503  41711

Before we end this section, let us learn how to test if an object is of class table using is.table().

is.table(tab2)
## [1] TRUE

Next, we will look at different R packages for two way/contingency tables.

10.3.18 Contingency Table

For cross tables with output similar to SAS or SPSS, use any of the below:

  • CrossTable() from the gmodels package
  • ds_cross_table() from the descriptr package
gmodels::CrossTable(data$device, data$gender)
## 
##  
##    Cell Contents
## |-------------------------|
## |                       N |
## | Chi-square contribution |
## |           N / Row Total |
## |           N / Col Total |
## |         N / Table Total |
## |-------------------------|
## 
##  
## Total Observations in Table:  102182 
## 
##  
##              | data$gender 
##  data$device |    female |      male | Row Total | 
## -------------|-----------|-----------|-----------|
##      Desktop |     32803 |     46418 |     79221 | 
##              |    58.228 |    38.334 |           | 
##              |     0.414 |     0.586 |     0.775 | 
##              |     0.809 |     0.753 |           | 
##              |     0.321 |     0.454 |           | 
## -------------|-----------|-----------|-----------|
##       Mobile |      7268 |     14503 |     21771 | 
##              |   218.694 |   143.975 |           | 
##              |     0.334 |     0.666 |     0.213 | 
##              |     0.179 |     0.235 |           | 
##              |     0.071 |     0.142 |           | 
## -------------|-----------|-----------|-----------|
##       Tablet |       494 |       696 |      1190 | 
##              |     0.986 |     0.649 |           | 
##              |     0.415 |     0.585 |     0.012 | 
##              |     0.012 |     0.011 |           | 
##              |     0.005 |     0.007 |           | 
## -------------|-----------|-----------|-----------|
## Column Total |     40565 |     61617 |    102182 | 
##              |     0.397 |     0.603 |           | 
## -------------|-----------|-----------|-----------|
## 
## 
descriptr::ds_cross_table(data, device, gender)
##     Cell Contents
##  |---------------|
##  |     Frequency |
##  |       Percent |
##  |       Row Pct |
##  |       Col Pct |
##  |---------------|
## 
##  Total Observations:  244398 
## 
## ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
## |              |                          gender                           |
## ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
## |       device |       female |         male |           NA |    Row Total |
## ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
## |      Desktop |        32803 |        46418 |        98061 |       177282 |
## |              |        0.134 |         0.19 |        0.401 |              |
## |              |         0.19 |         0.26 |         0.55 |         0.73 |
## |              |         0.81 |         0.75 |         0.69 |              |
## ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
## |       Mobile |         7268 |        14503 |        41711 |        63482 |
## |              |         0.03 |        0.059 |        0.171 |              |
## |              |         0.11 |         0.23 |         0.66 |         0.26 |
## |              |         0.18 |         0.24 |         0.29 |              |
## ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
## |       Tablet |          494 |          696 |         2444 |         3634 |
## |              |        0.002 |        0.003 |         0.01 |              |
## |              |         0.14 |         0.19 |         0.67 |         0.01 |
## |              |         0.01 |         0.01 |         0.02 |              |
## ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
## | Column Total |        40565 |        61617 |       142216 |       244398 |
## |              |        0.166 |        0.252 |        0.582 |              |
## ----------------------------------------------------------------------------

We list and explore different R packages for summarizing categorical data in the last section of this chapter.

10.3.19 Key Functions

10.3.20 Your Turn…

  1. Display the number of levels in

    • browser
    • channel
    • landing_page
    • exit_page
  2. Display the categories in

    • os
    • channel
    • browser
    • gender
    • user_type
  3. Display the count/frequency of

    • channel
    • user_type
  4. Examine the distribution of the following and summarize your observations:

    • channel by user_type
    • device by purchase_flag
    • channel by device
    • channel by purchase_flag
    • user_type by purchase_flag

10.4 Data Manipulation

10.4.1 Introduction

In this section, our focus will be on handling the levels of a categorical variable, and exploring the forcats package for the same. We will basically look at 3 key operations or transformations we would like to do when it comes to factors which are:

  • change value of levels
  • add or remove levels
  • change order of levels

Before we start working with the value of the levels, let us take a quick look at some of the functions we used in the previous sections. We will store the source of traffic as channel instead of referring to the column in the data.frame every time.

channel <- data$channel

Let us go back to the function we used for tabulating data, fct_count(). If you observe the result, it is in the same order as displayed by levels().

fct_count(channel)
## # A tibble: 8 x 2
##   f                   n
##   <fct>           <int>
## 1 (Other)          6073
## 2 Affiliates       7388
## 3 Direct          39853
## 4 Display          3375
## 5 Organic Search 139668
## 6 Paid Search      4395
## 7 Referral        35615
## 8 Social           8031

If you want to sort the results by the count i.e. most common level comes at the top, use the sort argument.

fct_count(channel, sort = TRUE)
## # A tibble: 8 x 2
##   f                   n
##   <fct>           <int>
## 1 Organic Search 139668
## 2 Direct          39853
## 3 Referral        35615
## 4 Social           8031
## 5 Affiliates       7388
## 6 (Other)          6073
## 7 Paid Search      4395
## 8 Display          3375

If you want to view the proportion along with the count, set the prop argument to TRUE.

fct_count(channel, prop = TRUE)
## # A tibble: 8 x 3
##   f                   n      p
##   <fct>           <int>  <dbl>
## 1 (Other)          6073 0.0248
## 2 Affiliates       7388 0.0302
## 3 Direct          39853 0.163 
## 4 Display          3375 0.0138
## 5 Organic Search 139668 0.571 
## 6 Paid Search      4395 0.0180
## 7 Referral        35615 0.146 
## 8 Social           8031 0.0329

One of the important steps in data preparation/sanitization is to check if the levels are valid i.e. only levels which should be present in the data are actually present. fct_match() can be used to check validity of levels. It returns a logical vector if the level is present and an error if not.

table(fct_match(channel, "Social"))
## 
##  FALSE   TRUE 
## 236367   8031

10.4.2 Your Turn…

  1. Display the count/frequency of the following variables in the descending order

    • device
    • landing_page
    • exit_page
  2. Check if laptop is a level in the device column.

10.4.3 Change Value of Levels

In this section, we will learn how to change the value of the levels. In order to keep it interesting, we will state an objective from our case study and then map it into a function from the forcats package.

10.4.5 Key Functions

Function Description
fct_collapse() Collapse factor levels
fct_recode() Recode factor levels
fct_lump_min() Lump factor levels with count lesser than specified value
fct_lump_n() Lump all levels except the top n levels
fct_lump_prop() Lump factor levels with count lesser than specified proportion
fct_lump_lowfreq() Lump together least frequent levels
fct_other() Replace levels with Other level
fct_anon() Anonymize factor levels

10.4.6 Your Turn..

  1. Combine the following levels in landing_page into Account

    • My Account
    • Register
    • Sign In
    • Your Info
  2. Combine levels in landing_page that drive less than 1000 visits.

  3. Get top 10 landing and exit pages.

  4. Get landing pages that drive at least 5% of the total traffic to the website.

  5. Retain only the following levels in the browser column:

    • Chrome
    • Firefox
    • Safari
    • Edge
  6. Anonymize landing and exit page levels.

10.4.7 Add / Remove Levels

In this small section, we will learn to:

  • add new levels
  • drop levels
  • make missing values explicit

10.4.8 Add a new level, Blog

fct_expand() allows us to add new levels to the data. The label of the new level must be specified after the variable name and must be enclosed in quotes. If the level already exists, it will be ignored. Let us add a new level, Blog.

levels(fct_expand(channel, "Blog"))
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"         "Display"       
## [5] "Organic Search" "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"        
## [9] "Blog"

Drop existing level

On the other hand, fct_drop() will drop levels which have no values i.e. unused levels. If you want to drop only specific levels, use the only argument and specify the name of the level in quotes. Let us drop the new level we added in the previous example.

levels(fct_drop(fct_expand(channel, "Blog")))
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"         "Display"       
## [5] "Organic Search" "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"

Make missing values explicit

In our data set, the gender column has many missing values, and in R, missing values are represented by NA. Suppose you are sharing the data or analysis with someone who is not an R user, and does not know what NA represents. In such a scenario, we can use the fct_explicit_na() function to make the missing values in the gender column explicit i.e. it will appear as (Missing) instead of NA. This will help non R users to understand that there are missing values in the data.

fct_count(fct_explicit_na(data$gender))
## # A tibble: 3 x 2
##   f              n
##   <fct>      <int>
## 1 female     40565
## 2 male       61617
## 3 (Missing) 142216

10.4.9 Key Functions

Function Description
fct_expand() Add additional levels to a factor
fct_drop() Drop unused factor levels
fct_explicit_na() Make missing values explicit

10.4.10 Change Order of Levels

In this last part of this section, we will learn how to change the order of the levels. We will look at the following scenarios from our case study:

We want to make

  • Organic Search the first level
  • Referral the third level
  • Display the last level

Organic Search is the first level

In this scenario, we want the levels to appear in a certain order. In the first case, we want Organic Search to be the first level. fct_relevel() allows us to manually reorder the levels. To move a level to the beginning, specify the label (it must be enclosed in quotes).

levels(channel)
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"         "Display"       
## [5] "Organic Search" "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"
levels(fct_relevel(channel, "Organic Search"))
## [1] "Organic Search" "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"        
## [5] "Display"        "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"

Referral is the third level

The after argument is useful when we want to move the level to the end or anywhere between the beginning and end. In the second case, we want Referral to be the third level. After specifying the label, use the after argument and specify the level after which Referral should appear. Since we want to move it to the third position, we will set the value of after to 2 i.e. Referral should come after the second position.

levels(channel)
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"         "Display"       
## [5] "Organic Search" "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"
levels(fct_relevel(channel, "Referral", after = 2))
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Referral"       "Direct"        
## [5] "Display"        "Organic Search" "Paid Search"    "Social"

Display is the last level

In this last case, we want to move Display to the end. If you know the number of levels, you can specify a value here. In our data, there are eight channels i.e. eight levels, so we can set the value of after to 7. What happens when we do not know the number of levels or if they tend to vary? In such cases, to move a level to the end, set the value of after to Inf.

levels(channel)
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"         "Display"       
## [5] "Organic Search" "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"
levels(fct_relevel(channel, "Display", after = Inf))
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"         "Organic Search"
## [5] "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"         "Display"

Let us now look at a scenario where we want to order the levels by

  • frequency (largest to smallest)
  • order of appearance (in data)

Order levels by frequency

In the first case, the levels with the most frequency should appear at the top. fct_infreq() will order the levels by their frequency.

# reorder levels
levels(channel)
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"         "Display"       
## [5] "Organic Search" "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"
levels(fct_infreq(channel))
## [1] "Organic Search" "Direct"         "Referral"       "Social"        
## [5] "Affiliates"     "(Other)"        "Paid Search"    "Display"

Order levels by appearance

In the second case, the order of the levels should be the same as the order of their appearance in the data. fct_inorder() will order the levels according to the order in which they appear in the data.

# reorder levels
levels(channel)
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"         "Display"       
## [5] "Organic Search" "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"
levels(fct_inorder(channel))
## [1] "Organic Search" "Direct"         "Referral"       "Affiliates"    
## [5] "(Other)"        "Social"         "Display"        "Paid Search"

Reverse the order of the levels

The order of the levels can be reversed using fct_rev().

# reorder levels
levels(channel)
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"         "Display"       
## [5] "Organic Search" "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"
levels(fct_rev(channel))
## [1] "Social"         "Referral"       "Paid Search"    "Organic Search"
## [5] "Display"        "Direct"         "Affiliates"     "(Other)"

Randomly shuffle the order of the levels

The order of the levels can be randomly shuffled using fct_shuffle().

# reorder levels
levels(channel)
## [1] "(Other)"        "Affiliates"     "Direct"         "Display"       
## [5] "Organic Search" "Paid Search"    "Referral"       "Social"
levels(fct_shuffle(channel))
## [1] "Affiliates"     "Display"        "Direct"         "Social"        
## [5] "Referral"       "Paid Search"    "(Other)"        "Organic Search"

10.4.11 Key Functions

Function Description
fct_relevel() Reorder factor levels
fct_shift() Shift factor levels
fct_infreq() Reorder factor levels by frequency
fct_rev() Reverse order of factor levels
fct_inorder() Reorder factor levels by first appearance
fct_shuffle() Randomly shuffle factor levels

10.4.12 Your Turn…

  1. Make Home first level in the landing_page column.

  2. Make Apparel second level in the landing_page column.

  3. Make Specials last level in the landing_page column.

  4. Order the levels in the browser by frequency:

  5. Order the levels in landing page by appearance:

  6. Shuffle the levels in os

  7. Reverse the levels in browser

10.5 Data Visualization

10.5.1 Introduction

In this section, we will learn to visualize categorical data. We will look at the following type of plots:

  • univariate bar plot
  • bivariate bar plot
    • grouped
    • stacked
    • proportional
  • mosaic plot
  • pie chart
  • donut chart

We will be using ggplot2 in this chapter. So you should know the basics of data visualization with ggplot2. If you are new or have never used ggplot2, do not worry. We have several tutorials and an ebook on ggplot2, you can go through them first and then come back to this section.

10.5.2 Bar Plot

Bar charts provide a visual representation of categorical data. The bars can be plotted either vertically or horizontally. The categories/groups appear along the horizontal X axis and the height of the bar represents a measured value.

ggplot(data) +
  geom_bar(aes(x = device), fill = "blue") +
  xlab("Device") + ylab("Count")

In the above example, the bars represent the count/frequency of the categories. If the bars represent continuous data, the value could be mean or sum of the variable being represented.

10.5.3 Grouped Bar Plot

A grouped bar chart plots values for two levels of a categorical variable instead of one. You should use grouped bar chart when making comparisons across different categories of data. Use it when you want to look at how the second category variable changes within each level of the first and vice versa.

ggplot(data) +
  geom_bar(aes(x = device, fill = gender), position = "dodge") +
  xlab("Device") + ylab("Count")

10.5.4 Stacked Bar Plot

In stacked bar plots, the bars are stacked on top of each other instead of placing them next to each other. Use stacked bar plots while looking at cumulative value.

ggplot(data) +
  geom_bar(aes(x = device, fill = gender)) +
  xlab("Device") + ylab("Count")

10.5.5 Proportional Bar Plot

Also known as percent stacked plot, the height of all bars in this plot are the same. The distribution of the second categorical variable is scaled to 1 or 100. The length of each bar is determined by its share in the category. Use this when you want to concurrently observe each of several variables as they fluctuate and as their percentage ratio’s change.

data %>% 
  select(device, gender) %>% 
  table() %>% 
  tibble::as_tibble() %>% 
  ggplot(aes(x = device, y = n, fill = gender)) +
  geom_bar(stat = "identity", position = "fill") +
  xlab("Device") + ylab("Gender")

10.5.6 Mosaic Plot

A mosaic plot is a graphical representation of a two way table or contingency table. It was introduced by Hartigan & Kleiner and is divided into rectangles. Proportions on horizontal axis represents the number of observations for each level of the X variable. The vertical length of each rectangle is proportional to the proportion of Y variable in each level of X variable.

ggplot(data = data) +
  geom_mosaic(aes(x = product(channel, device), fill = channel)) +
  xlab("Device") + ylab("Channel")

10.5.7 Pie Chart

Pie chart is a circular chart, divided into slices to show relevant sizes of data. It shows the distribution of the different levels of a categorical variable as a circle is divided into radial slices. Each level corresponds with a single slice of the circle and size indicates the proportion of the level. Use it when comparing each group’s contribution to the whole as opposed to comparing groups to each other.

Base R

data %>% 
  pull(device) %>% 
  table() %>% 
  pie()

3D Pie Chart

data %>% 
  pull(device) %>% 
  table() %>% 
  pie3D(explode = 0.1)

ggplot2

data %>% 
  pull(device) %>% 
  fct_count() %>% 
  rename(device = f, count = n) %>% 
  ggplot() +
  geom_bar(aes(x = "", y = count, fill = device), width = 1, stat = "identity") +
  coord_polar("y", start = 0)

10.5.8 Donut Chart

Donut chart is a variation of the pie chart. It has a round hole in the middle which makes it look like a donut. The focus is on the length of the arcs and not the proportions of the slices. Blank spaces inside donut chart can be used to display information inside it.

data %>% 
  pull(device) %>% 
  fct_count() %>% 
  rename(device = f, count = n) %>% 
  ggdonutchart("count", label = "device", fill = "device", color = "white",
               palette = c("#00AFBB", "#E7B800", "#FC4E07"))

10.5.9 Summary

  • Bar charts provide a visual representation of categorical data.
  • Use grouped bar chart to make comparison against different categories of data.
  • Use stacked bar chart while looking at cumulative data.
  • Use proportional bar chart when you want to concurrently observe each of the several variables as they fluctuate.
  • Use mosaic plot to discover associations between two variables.
  • Use pie chart and donut chart when comparing each group’s contribution to the whole.

10.5.10 Your Turn…

Generate all the below plots:

  1. Bar plot of channel

  1. Display grouped bar plot of user_type by channel

  1. Display stacked bar plot of channel by gender

  1. Display proportional bar plot of channel by device

  1. Display mosaic plot of device by channel

  1. Display pie or donut chart of channel

6.1 Pie Chart

6.2 3D Pie Chart

6.3 Pie Chart (ggplot2)

6.4 Donut Chart

10.6 Useful R Packages

Below are a list of functions from different R pacakges for summarizing categorical data.

10.6.1 Summarize Variables

Hmisc::describe(data$device)
## data$device 
##        n  missing distinct 
##   244398        0        3 
##                                   
## Value      Desktop  Mobile  Tablet
## Frequency   177282   63482    3634
## Proportion   0.725   0.260   0.015
janitor::tabyl(data$device)
##  data$device      n    percent
##      Desktop 177282 0.72538237
##       Mobile  63482 0.25974844
##       Tablet   3634 0.01486919
epiDisplay::tab1(data$device)

## data$device : 
##         Frequency Percent Cum. percent
## Desktop    177282    72.5         72.5
## Mobile      63482    26.0         98.5
## Tablet       3634     1.5        100.0
##   Total    244398   100.0        100.0
summarytools::freq(data$device)
## Registered S3 method overwritten by 'pryr':
##   method      from
##   print.bytes Rcpp
## Frequencies  
## data$device  
## Type: Factor  
## 
##                   Freq   % Valid   % Valid Cum.   % Total   % Total Cum.
## ------------- -------- --------- -------------- --------- --------------
##       Desktop   177282     72.54          72.54     72.54          72.54
##        Mobile    63482     25.97          98.51     25.97          98.51
##        Tablet     3634      1.49         100.00      1.49         100.00
##          <NA>        0                               0.00         100.00
##         Total   244398    100.00         100.00    100.00         100.00
questionr::freq(data$device)
## This version of bslib is designed to work with shiny version 1.6.0 or higher.
##              n    % val%
## Desktop 177282 72.5 72.5
## Mobile   63482 26.0 26.0
## Tablet    3634  1.5  1.5
descriptr::ds_freq_table(data, device)
##                            Variable: device                             
## -----------------------------------------------------------------------
## Levels     Frequency    Cum Frequency       Percent        Cum Percent  
## -----------------------------------------------------------------------
## Desktop     177282         177282            72.54            72.54    
## -----------------------------------------------------------------------
## Mobile       63482         240764            25.97            98.51    
## -----------------------------------------------------------------------
## Tablet       3634          244398            1.49              100     
## -----------------------------------------------------------------------
##  Total      244398            -             100.00              -      
## -----------------------------------------------------------------------

10.6.2 Summarize Data Set

minilytics <- select(data, device, browser, os)
psych::describe(minilytics)
##          vars      n mean   sd median trimmed mad min max range  skew kurtosis
## device*     1 244398 1.29 0.49      1    1.22 0.0   1   3     2  1.31     0.58
## browser*    2 244398 8.22 4.84      6    7.14 0.0   1  26    25  1.80     1.43
## os*         3 244398 8.80 4.47      8    8.99 8.9   1  16    15 -0.08    -1.36
##            se
## device*  0.00
## browser* 0.01
## os*      0.01
skimr::skim(minilytics)
(#tab:appendix_2)Data summary
Name minilytics
Number of rows 244398
Number of columns 3
_______________________
Column type frequency:
factor 3
________________________
Group variables None

Variable type: factor

skim_variable n_missing complete_rate ordered n_unique top_counts
device 0 1 FALSE 3 Des: 177282, Mob: 63482, Tab: 3634
browser 0 1 FALSE 26 Chr: 192176, Saf: 35323, Fir: 6420, Edg: 3787
os 0 1 FALSE 16 Win: 91223, Mac: 66171, And: 39055, iOS: 27866
summarytools::dfSummary(minilytics)
## Data Frame Summary  
## minilytics  
## Dimensions: 244398 x 3  
## Duplicates: 244317  
## 
## -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
## No   Variable   Stats / Values            Freqs (% of Valid)   Graph                Valid     Missing  
## ---- ---------- ------------------------- -------------------- -------------------- --------- ---------
## 1    device     1. Desktop                177282 (72.5%)       IIIIIIIIIIIIII       244398    0        
##      [factor]   2. Mobile                  63482 (26.0%)       IIIII                (100%)    (0%)     
##                 3. Tablet                   3634 ( 1.5%)                                               
## 
## 2    browser    1. Amazon Silk               168 ( 0.1%)                            244398    0        
##      [factor]   2. Android Browser           101 ( 0.0%)                            (100%)    (0%)     
##                 3. Android Webview          1215 ( 0.5%)                                               
##                 4. APKPure                     1 ( 0.0%)                                               
##                 5. BlackBerry                  7 ( 0.0%)                                               
##                 6. Chrome                 192176 (78.6%)       IIIIIIIIIIIIIII                         
##                 7. Coc Coc                    45 ( 0.0%)                                               
##                 8. Edge                     3787 ( 1.5%)                                               
##                 9. Firefox                  6420 ( 2.6%)                                               
##                 10. Internet Explorer        700 ( 0.3%)                                               
##                 [ 16 others ]              39778 (16.3%)       III                                     
## 
## 3    os         1. (not set)                179 ( 0.1%)                             244398    0        
##      [factor]   2. Android                39055 (16.0%)        III                  (100%)    (0%)     
##                 3. BlackBerry                16 ( 0.0%)                                                
##                 4. Chrome OS              14038 ( 5.7%)        I                                       
##                 5. Firefox OS                 4 ( 0.0%)                                                
##                 6. iOS                    27866 (11.4%)        II                                      
##                 7. Linux                   5781 ( 2.4%)                                                
##                 8. Macintosh              66171 (27.1%)        IIIII                                   
##                 9. OS/2                       3 ( 0.0%)                                                
##                 10. Playstation 4            15 ( 0.0%)                                                
##                 [ 6 others ]              91270 (37.3%)        IIIIIII                                 
## -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
tableone::CreateTableOne(vars = c("device", "os"), data = minilytics)
##                      
##                       Overall       
##   n                   244398        
##   device (%)                        
##      Desktop          177282 (72.5) 
##      Mobile            63482 (26.0) 
##      Tablet             3634 ( 1.5) 
##   os (%)                            
##      (not set)           179 ( 0.1) 
##      Android           39055 (16.0) 
##      BlackBerry           16 ( 0.0) 
##      Chrome OS         14038 ( 5.7) 
##      Firefox OS            4 ( 0.0) 
##      iOS               27866 (11.4) 
##      Linux              5781 ( 2.4) 
##      Macintosh         66171 (27.1) 
##      OS/2                  3 ( 0.0) 
##      Playstation 4        15 ( 0.0) 
##      Playstation Vita      1 ( 0.0) 
##      Samsung               5 ( 0.0) 
##      Tizen                20 ( 0.0) 
##      Windows           91223 (37.3) 
##      Windows Phone        13 ( 0.0) 
##      Xbox                  8 ( 0.0)
desctable::desctable(minilytics)
##                                           N            %
## 1                             device 244398           NA
## 2                    device: Desktop 177282 7.253824e+01
## 3                     device: Mobile  63482 2.597484e+01
## 4                     device: Tablet   3634 1.486919e+00
## 5                            browser 244398           NA
## 6               browser: Amazon Silk    168 6.874033e-02
## 7           browser: Android Browser    101 4.132603e-02
## 8           browser: Android Webview   1215 4.971399e-01
## 9                   browser: APKPure      1 4.091687e-04
## 10               browser: BlackBerry      7 2.864181e-03
## 11                   browser: Chrome 192176 7.863239e+01
## 12                  browser: Coc Coc     45 1.841259e-02
## 13                     browser: Edge   3787 1.549522e+00
## 14                  browser: Firefox   6420 2.626863e+00
## 15        browser: Internet Explorer    700 2.864181e-01
## 16                  browser: Maxthon      5 2.045843e-03
## 17 browser: Mozilla Compatible Agent     13 5.319192e-03
## 18                 browser: MRCHROME      1 4.091687e-04
## 19                    browser: Opera   1145 4.684981e-01
## 20               browser: Opera Mini     52 2.127677e-02
## 21            browser: Playstation 4     15 6.137530e-03
## 22 browser: Playstation Vita Browser      1 4.091687e-04
## 23                   browser: Puffin     18 7.365036e-03
## 24                   browser: Safari  35323 1.445306e+01
## 25          browser: Safari (in-app)    658 2.692330e-01
## 26         browser: Samsung Internet   2065 8.449333e-01
## 27                browser: SeaMonkey      3 1.227506e-03
## 28                   browser: Seznam      1 4.091687e-04
## 29               browser: UC Browser    174 7.119535e-02
## 30       browser: User-Agent:Mozilla     28 1.145672e-02
## 31                browser: YaBrowser    276 1.129305e-01
## 32                                os 244398           NA
## 33                     os: (not set)    179 7.324119e-02
## 34                       os: Android  39055 1.598008e+01
## 35                    os: BlackBerry     16 6.546698e-03
## 36                     os: Chrome OS  14038 5.743910e+00
## 37                    os: Firefox OS      4 1.636675e-03
## 38                           os: iOS  27866 1.140189e+01
## 39                         os: Linux   5781 2.365404e+00
## 40                     os: Macintosh  66171 2.707510e+01
## 41                          os: OS/2      3 1.227506e-03
## 42                 os: Playstation 4     15 6.137530e-03
## 43              os: Playstation Vita      1 4.091687e-04
## 44                       os: Samsung      5 2.045843e-03
## 45                         os: Tizen     20 8.183373e-03
## 46                       os: Windows  91223 3.732559e+01
## 47                 os: Windows Phone     13 5.319192e-03
## 48                          os: Xbox      8 3.273349e-03