Drill-Through to Subtotal’s Details in Power BI

A friend asked me about a way to allow users to display line level information – what you normally do with a drillthrough page – however, not for a single line, but for all currently selected items in the table object, i.e. if you have a simple table, like the one below:

How can we see a list of all 657 cities at once? The answer lies in a combination of bookmarks & slicer settings. I should note that, technically, it is possible to right-click your way to such a drill-through page, containing all selected countries, but it’s not user friendly, see image below:

Slicers can be synced across pages and they can be either visible or not, independently from their syncing. What this means in practice is that you can have identical, functioning slicers on different pages, in sync, where only one one is visible (let’s say on the main page). (If you want to go Pro with slicers, have a look at this link)

Bookmarks themselves have several options that are often overlooked, but they allow very creative solutions when it comes to report design. (Pro bookmark usage here). These options allow the report developer to choose what to be stored in the bookmark selection and the option we’re interested in is called simply “Data”. Unchecking it means that the bookmark accepts the filters, active at the time of evoking it (having it checked, the default setting, means that it keeps the filters that were active at the time of creation/last update of the bookmark).

So back to the question – how can we make it easier for the users. My suggestion is by giving them a button, tied to a bookmark to the “Details” page, with a synced slicer (or why not slicers!) in both pages, emulating the drill-through effect.

Visually I would suggest two options – a classic, separate button, or the “Blank” button, layered on top of the table, creating the effect of a border around the table. Below you can see an example of the latter.

A “Blank” button overlaid on top of a table. A tooltip from the button tells the user to click for details.

I hope you like this idea and thank you for reading.


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