Stitch and Xplenty are cloud-based ETL (Extract, Transform, Load) and ELT platforms designed to integrate data between the most popular databases, data warehouses, SaaS services, and applications. Both Stitch and Xplenty offer point-and-click interfaces, no-code/low-code ETL tools, a wide variety of native connectors, and they maintain strong reputations for quality and dependability in the ETL space.
So considering the similarities of both platforms, how do you decide whether Xplenty or Stitch is best for your needs? In this detailed comparison, we look at both solutions from seven angles of comparison to give you a clear picture of how these solutions measure up to each other.
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Overview of Stitch vs Xplenty
Let’s start this comparison of Stitch vs. Xplenty with a brief overview of their differences.
Stitch is more of a lightweight “EL” solution than an ETL solution. The platform chooses to focus more on data extraction and loading and only offers the minimum of preload data transformation capabilities. With Stitch’s free tier for very low-volume data transfers, its data-volume-based pricing structure, and its beginner-friendly user interface, Stitch is best suited for small firms that aren’t dealing with high data volumes and don’t have access to a skilled IT or data engineering department.
Larger firms and growing startups may run into some challenges with Stitch. First of all, medium-to-large businesses and enterprises will find Stitch’s volume-based pricing structure unpredictable from month to month as some months costs will be a great deal higher than others. Moreover, businesses that require high-volume ETL processes could find that Stitch is too expensive to be practical. That being said, Stitch is a developer-friendly integration platform that offers an excellent solution for smaller businesses that have lower data requirements and don’t need in-pipeline data transformations.
While there are plenty of “easy-to-use” no-code and low-code ETL platforms on the market like Stitch, these beginner-friendly platforms lack the power and high-volume data capabilities of an enterprise-grade ETL solution. Conversely, most enterprise-grade platforms are so difficult to use, that enterprises need to burden their IT staff and a team of skilled developers to operate them.
Xplenty achieves the perfect balance between these two sides of the ETL equation. By offering an intuitive, point-and-click interface to beginners, along with the most advanced extract, transform, load capabilities of a sophisticated enterprise-grade integration platform, Xplenty empowers anyone to quickly build sophisticated data pipelines that were once the domain of experienced data engineers only.
Xplenty also allows you to extract Salesforce data, transform it, and inject it back into Salesforce. This offers a unique advantage to enterprises that rely heavily on Salesforce data for CRM and business intelligence.
Because Xplenty uses a flat-rate pricing structure (which charges a set rate per connection and doesn’t charge based on data volume) enterprises can expect a fixed monthly bill. This gives Xplenty integrations unlimited data volume capacities, so enterprises don’t have to worry about exorbitant fees after a month of high-volume data ingestion.
Now that you have a general overview of Stitch and Xplenty, let’s dive deeper into the unique aspects of both these platforms.
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User Interface (UI)
Stitch’s visual point-and-click interface was intended to make the platform easy for beginners to use; however, many say that Stitch was also built with developers in mind. In balancing the needs of ETL beginners with those of developers, some ease of use has been sacrificed, and beginners could find themselves getting stuck while using this powerful ETL solution.
(Image Source: Stitch Data)
Here’s what users say about the Stitch UI:
“If sending data to Stitch was easy, connecting to one of the data warehouses was not so simple. Although you just need to select the destination and follow the instructions I felt they didn't explain properly the configuration step.”
“Stitch's UI makes it easy to configure which tables should be replicated, and how they should be replicated.”
Xplenty offers an intuitive, drag-and-drop interface that was built to make ETL easy for beginners as well as those with coding skills. Even if you don’t know anything about ETL, you can use Xplenty to define data fields, create API parameters, name headers, set primary keys for consolidations, and define the frequency of data flows. On the other hand, data engineers with SQL, Python, and Java coding skills can use Xplenty to code ETL processes in their favorite languages. Xplenty’s support team is also ready to help beginners get through the process of setting up the integrations and data pipelines they need.
Here’s what users say about the Xplenty UI:
“Xplenty's easy-to-use interface makes it possible for less-technical members of my team to dive in and create/edit ETL jobs and schedules. We use Xplenty to enhance partner data, transform and add flexibility to how we structure and consume various data streams. Xplenty makes this easy.”
“Xplenty sits in the golden middle letting analysts and engineers deploy custom transformation jobs in minutes even based on multiple data sources. The UI is intuitive but you can always use SQL to filter your sources or to create new sets in scheduled packages. Also, there are plenty of built-in functions available.”
“It allowed us to free up development resources that were previously tied up in making data integration pipelines with custom software. That is not needed anymore as Xplenty solves this issue for us and we can achieve the same result with significantly less resources and very quickly.”
“1. The user experience is so good. 2. Every feature and usability has been simplified unlike in other enterprise ETL tools. 3. The managed service for infrastructure is the USP of Xplenty.”
Stitch Connectors and Integrations
Stitch offers a variety of prebuilt connectors to establish automatic integrations with different platforms and data sources. It also includes a REST API connector, so you can connect to virtually any source/destination that exposes a REST API.
As for data warehouse integrations, Stitch is compatible with the most popular data warehouse options including:
- Amazon Redshift
- Microsoft Azure
- Google BigQuery
Here’s a small sample of Stitch’s integration offerings:
(Image Source: Screenshot)
Finally, through the Talend suite of integration tools, Stitch allows you to access an open-source platform called Singer, where you can build custom REST API integrations and share them with other community members. This open-source integration sharing platform expands Stitch’s integration offerings.
Here’s what users say about Stitch integrations:
“There are a number of integrations and most "top" services are well supported.”
“There are still a few connectors we'd like to see but this may not necessarily be the fault of Stitch. I would also like to see better auditing of who is making changes, such as adding or removing integrations, as well as adding or removing fields.”
Xplenty Connectors and Integrations
Xplenty offers a similar variety of native connectors to set up automatic integrations with different data sources and platforms. Also like Stitch, Xplenty includes a REST API connector, so you can pull/push data to and from any source or destination that exposes a REST API.
As for data warehouse integrations, Xplenty establishes data flows to and from the most widely-used data warehouse destinations including:
- Amazon Redshift
- Microsoft Azure
- Google BigQuery
Here’s a small sample of Xplenty’s integration offerings:
(Image Source: Xplenty.com)
A valuable difference between Stitch and Xplenty is Xplenty’s native Salesforce to Salesforce connector. This integration allows you to extract data out of Salesforce, transform it, then load it back into Salesforce -- which is something that Stitch cannot do. In fact, this two-way Salesforce integration is typically only available in the largest, most expensive ETL/Integration/ESB platforms (like MuleSoft or IBM App Connect). These giant platforms are extremely difficult to use, require extensive training to operate successfully, and they probably include more services and features than your organization needs or wants to pay for.
With Xplenty, you can achieve two-way Salesforce integrations simply and economically. Even an ETL beginner can create a Salesforce to Salesforce two-way integration by following these simple steps:
- Set up a connection between Salesforce and your data warehouse using Xplenty’s no-code, point-and-click interface.
- Pull the data from Salesforce, transform it, then load it back to Salesforce after changing it.
Xplenty’s Salesforce integrations also allow you to load third-party information into Heroku Postgres, then use Heroku Connect to pipe it into Salesforce, or simply send it to Salesforce directly. Finally, you can pull data from Salesforce, transform it in-pipeline, or join it with other data before loading the information into a data warehouse.
In addition to its native connectors, Xplenty maintains a large library of ready-made integrations that it has customized for clients in the past. If you need to connect to an uncommon API, the Xplenty team will search this library for previous connections made for the API you’re trying to connect to. If a previous integration doesn’t exist for the endpoint you desire, an Xplenty integration specialist will show you how to create a custom connection for that endpoint with the Xplenty’s native REST API connector.
Here’s what reviewers say about Xplenty’s REST API connector:
“When there is no native connector, the REST API connector will achieve the result we want, and the support team is always ready to jump in and help if needed. I also like the fact that the support team and comprehensive documentation are often focussed on helping you learn to achieve the result you want rather than doing the job for you. This has helped us leverage the learnings for other uses.”
“I came from very minimal experience working with SQL, REST APIs, and Salesforce SOQL. In a few weeks, we were able to connect our Salesforce into a SQL database for reporting, storage, and analysis. The time we saved and the insights we gained were invaluable.”
In-Pipeline Data Transformations
Stitch In-Pipeline/Preload Data Transformations
The Stitch platform isn’t very focused on “in-pipeline data transformations.” Instead, Stitch focuses mostly on the “E and L” part of ETL, and it doesn’t offer much in the way of preload transformations. By limiting preload transformations to basic tasks like breaking nested structures and transforming database styles, Stitch puts the majority of the transformation burden into the hands of the user.
Here’s what reviewers say about Stitch’s lack of in-pipeline transformation options:
“It's not exactly 'capital T' transform. But, Stitch is good enough for most light/medium duty data warehousing needs.”
“The 'T' in ETL is missing. Some minor transformation is sometimes required.”
Xplenty In-Pipeline/Preload Data Transformations
Xplenty offers a wide range of preload transformations such as Filter, Join, Select, Limit, and Clone, which you can set up without writing a single line of code. Xplenty’s point-and-click interface lets beginners without ETL experience design pipelines that transform data en route before it loads into your data warehouse or other destination.
Also, Xplenty’s easy-to-use workflow sequence tools allow you to set up packages that execute a series of transformation tasks on autopilot. For example, you can set a string of conditions that trigger a dataflow package or a SQL query, all through the platform’s intuitive, visual, and drop-down based interface.
Here’s how simple it is to set up a transformation workflow with Xplenty:
- Select “Packages” on the main menu.
- Choose “New Package.”
- Select the “Workflow” option on the dropdown.
- Choose the series of tasks that follow.
- Select the conditions that cause different actions to trigger.
This user offers his opinion of Xplenty’s in-pipeline transformations:
“There are also a number of ways to transform the data that are built-in. For example, I have user-agent strings in my database, and Xplenty can easily make those into the browser version, device type, and other separate columns. Scheduling of jobs is very intuitive for both the less technical user and for users that are very familiar with crontabs.”
Security and Encryption
Stitch Security and Encryption
Stitch uses the following security and encryption systems to keep your data secure:
- Encrypts all credentials for accessing external systems such as databases and SaaS integrations.
- Encrypts data both in transit and at rest.
- Uses SSL/TLS encryption on data extracted from an HTTP API, and supports SSL encryption for a wide variety of databases.
- Uses the native database encryption when extracting data from a database, or it will use an SSH tunnel.
- Only the enterprise edition supports VPN and reverse SSH tunnel connections.
Xplenty Security and Encryption
Xplenty uses the following security and encryption features to keep your data secure:
- Supports SSL/TLS encryption for all Xplenty microservices and websites.
- Encrypts all customer data at rest and in transit on the Xplenty platform.
- Continuously verifies security certificates and encryption algorithms.
- Uses firewall-based access control to deny access to your data from all internal and external networks. You must assign specific access to different ports/protocols in order to grant access.
- Uses a field-level encryption tool for encrypting and decrypting data.
- Uses key authentication for added levels of security so only approved Xplenty staff members can access the Xplenty operating system.
Stitch meets the criteria for GDPR compliance, including an updated Data Processing Addendum (DPA) for cross-border EU data transfers. Stitch also has US-EU and US-SWISS Privacy Shield Program certification. However, Stitch users do not automatically benefit from SOC 2 and HIPAA compliance. For SOC 2 and HIPAA compliance, you must pay a premium for the Stitch Enterprise edition.
Xplenty meets the criteria for SOC 2 and HIPAA compliance. Xplenty also complies with the latest GDPR standards and includes an updated Data Processing Addendum (DPA) for cross-border EU data transfers. Finally, because Xplenty is hosted/managed on Amazon AWS data centers, their platform boasts the following accreditations: ISO 27001; FISMA Moderate; PCI Level 1; and Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX).
Stitch Customer Support
Stitch doesn’t offer phone-based, voice, or video-chat support unless you pay a premium for the enterprise edition. The lower tiers of Stitch only permit text-based chat support. If you or someone on your team is an inexperienced ETL beginner, you could get stuck needing to hire an independent expert for support if you don’t subscribe to Stitch’s higher-priced tier.
According to online reviewers, the quality of Stitch Enterprise customer support is great:
“The team has been amazingly helpful and supportive when we've had questions.”
Xplenty Customer Support
Xplenty maintains the philosophy that anyone, regardless of tech experience, should be able to use the Xplenty platform to set up complex and powerful data integrations to and from any data source, and Xplenty’s customer support team is key to making this vision a reality.
All Xplenty tiers include unlimited telephone, video conferencing, email, and text chat support with an integration specialist. Whether it’s over the phone or by video chat, your personally-assigned Xplenty integration specialist will walk you through the process of setting up the integrations, data pipelines, and transformations you need.
Online reviewers describe Xplenty support as “near-real-time” and “one of the best they have ever experienced”:
“What we love best about Xplenty is the near real-time support we get from the team. Xplenty's point of difference is the customer support we receive. The product itself is good. Easy to use at a high level. The people at Xplenty are the difference - which is unusual for Cloud proposition. A nice change from dealing with a faceless machine.”
“The customer support is one of the best I have experienced. They were very prompt every time I would have an issue with using Xplenty. Moreover, the development team is also quite fast, as they were able to implement pagination for an API I was using in less than 2 days.”
"Xplenty is an ETL and ELT platform that has helped my data team immensely. Overall the best part is how much they value my company as a client. You can’t find that in many ETL companies. I searched many other companies, and am happy I chose Xplenty."
Stitch’s pricing charges based on the amount of data you extract and load. This allows Stitch to charge a low fee to start using the platform. They also have a free tier for up to 5 million rows of data a month. However, as soon as the size of data transfers starts to scale, the monthly price will skyrocket, even becoming unaffordable for a business if you’re pulling in too much data. Fees for Stitch can be difficult to forecast because each month the enterprise will pay a different amount based on usage.
Lastly, Stitch offers a free, 2-week trial of the platform.
Here’s what users say about Stitch’s price:
“Replications can be costly depending on needs, especially with larger attribution windows like Facebook ads, so adjust your replication frequency accordingly. Make sure you overestimate your requirements for row counts and test at a lower commitment.”
“Stitch charges based on the volume of data imported. At some point, it is probably cheaper to hire someone to build the integrations in-house. It is not suited for a big company for which ETL is a really big thing and does not want to outsource it.”
Xplenty’s approach toward pricing keeps things as simple as possible. Instead of charging by the volume or size of data loads, Xplenty charges a flat rate per connector. With Xplenty, enterprises benefit from a fixed, predictable pricing structure that stays the same unless they need to add more connectors. Even when adding more connectors, you’ll know exactly how much extra the connections will cost, and you can budget accordingly.
Lastly, Xplenty offers a free 2-week pilot without any restrictions. Users can sign up for this trial without a credit card so there’s absolutely no commitment.
Here’s what users say about Xplenty price:
“The cost of their service is well worth the accuracy, consistency, and time savings it provides. I would recommend them to anyone looking to connect data in CRM systems like Salesforce to SQL databases, and anything in between.”
“If you aren't running a massive amount of real-time integrations then it is cost-effective.”
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Final Thoughts on Stitch vs. Xplenty
Now that you’ve read this far, you should have a clear picture of the various features and characteristics of Xplenty and Stitch – as well as how the two platforms measure up against each other.
If you’re looking for an ETL platform that will satisfy the needs of an experienced team of data engineers -- while at the same time empowering ETL beginners to build data pipelines and establish data connections without any special training -- you might want to schedule an appointment with one of our integration specialists to give Xplenty a test spin.
Xplenty’s low coding requirements, excellent support, and advanced data transformation features mean that developers, data engineers, business analysts, and marketers alike can all use the same tool for their ETL processes. We guarantee you’ll be surprised at how easy building powerful, secure, ETL pipelines can be.