Report types: How to Choose the Right Type of Report?

Report types: How to Choose the Right Type of Report?

Reports are the basic business requirements of an enterprise. It can help enterprises make better use of data if appropriate reports can present different data. Report types can be viewed from different perspectives. Here, from the perspective of report formats in business,  I will introduce the top 10 types of reports and the reporting examples to help you choose the right report to support your decision.


  • Detail Reports
  • Group Reports
  • Pagination Reports
  • Split Reports
  • Cross Reports
  • Master-sub Reports
  • Irregular Reports
  • Query Reports
  • Chart Reports
  • Print Reports

An In-Depth Look at Top 10 Report Types& Examples 

NOTE: All the reporting examples in the article are taken from the reporting software FineReport. Various templates covering different sectors are built in the FineReport Designer. You can download the FineReport to use these templates for free.

Type # 1. Detail Reports

The detailed report is the simplest way to display the data. It is mainly for listing the data such as sales list, customer list, expenditure list.

Tables and lists are the widgets most commonly used in this type of report.

reporting example-detail report
From FineReport

Type #2. Group Reports

Group reports classification displays and summarizes the data. It groups the data of the same attribute according to the requirements.

For example, to facilitate the summary of data such as the total price of each supplier.

Types of report-group report
From FineReport

Type #3. Pagination Reports

When the data amount is large, you can paginate the reports to make it easier to read. You can set the title repeated to let the pagination reports more consistent.

Pagination Report
From FineReport

Type #4. Split Reports

By using the split report, the drawing area of the report can be taken advantage of. Two types of split reports are used often: horizontal column and vertical column. They are commonly used for barcode print, label print, and so on. For instance, below is the personal information card in split formats.

Split Report
From FineReport

Type #5. Cross Reports

Cross report sorts and summarizes data in both row and column directions. Compared to traditional group reports, column headers of cross reports are horizontally extended based on database field values and change dynamically with field values.

Cross Report
From FineReport

Type #6. Master-sub Reports

The main report is mainly used to display the overall summary data of the report, while the subreport is used to display the detailed data related to the summary data.
In this type of report, you can also use the drill down to clearly and intuitively understand the hierarchy of different levels of data, and focus on the levels you are interested in.

master-sub report
From FineReport

Type #7.Irregular Reports

Irregular reports meet the needs of complex reports with irregular formats. To make the reports, you need to merge and split cells in Excel frequently. You can also use the reporting software to deal with it. For instance, FineReport provides the aggregation report; each aggregation block is independent; you can drag&drop and put them together freely to create irregular reports.

report types- irregular report
From FineReport

Type #8. Query Reports

The query report is the report with query widgets. This type of report usually is used when the data volume is large. Or the reports have time filtering requirements such as annual reports, monthly reports.

reporting example-query report
From FineReport

Type #9. Chart Reports

This kind of report also can be called a dashboard. By presenting the data in different kinds of charts, the relationship between the data can be better analyzed.

Chart report dashboard
From FineReport

Type #10. Set Print Reports

Set print reports have strict requirements for report format and print style, requiring data to be printed to the specified location.

From FineReport
From FineReport

How to create these different kinds of reports?

As mentioned in the beginning, the examples showed above are made by FineReport.  Its designer has three report design modes, corresponding to different formats you want to realize.

To create regular reports such as detailed reports, group reports, split reports, general report mode in FineReport is your best choice. The operation is just like in Excel, while the process is actually easier than Excel.

Aggregation report mode is an innovative design for irregular reports. Each aggregation block is independent; you can drag&drop and put them together freely to create irregular reports.

Dashboard mode provides you a canvas-like interface to draw your impressive dashboard via drag and drop the stunning widgets such as 3D point earth, KPI card, time gear, and so on.

You know what?……

FineReport is totally free for personal use, with more than 100+ templates built in it. If you want to try more reporting tools, I collected the 10  best reporting tools you can’t miss in 2020. Welcome to take full advantage of it!

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