Choosing the best BI tool for your business is difficult, we make it easier. We've compiled a list of the best BI Tools in the industry right now. The list is from A-Z and each BI tool on the list has a short explanation, a bulleted summary of its features, and a link to the website or free trial. In order to use these BI tools, you need to have accurate, prepared data from an outside source (ie. data warehouse). If you need help choosing the best data warehouse for your business, read our 17 Best Data Warehousing Tools and Resources blog before continuing with this one.

Now, if you haven't aggregated your data yet, it would be a good idea to consider integrating an ETL platform like Xplenty with your BI platform. An ETL solution extracts, transforms, and loads your data into a data warehouse for BI insights. If you have already centralized, prepared, and cleaned-up your data, then you're ready to choose your BI tool.

Top 17 BI Tools of 2019 

1. Birst

Birst is a cloud-based business intelligence and analytics platform. Its network analytics approach integrates an enterprise's scattered data into a shared container. An intuitive interface enables the collection of data from various outside sources. Easy-to-use tools enable the creation of charts, dashboards, and high definition reports. Birst offers predictive applications, automated data refinement, and drag and drop projections. Users include enterprises of all sizes, in diverse industries. Primary users are companies that need to connect decentralized units with networked data. 

Features:

  • provides a cloud-based business intelligence and analytics solution
  • integrates an enterprise's scattered data into a shared common place
  • allows access from on-premise, web and cloud
  • collects data from various sources
  • provides easy-to-use tools for creation of charts, dashboards, and high definition reports
  • offers predictive applications, automated data refinement, and drag and drop projections
  • shares content via cloud architecture
  • provides solutions for enterprises of all sizes, in diverse industries
  • users are primarily enterprises that need to connect decentralized units with networked data
  • offers free trial: https://www.birst.com/trial/

Product link: https://www.birst.com/product/

2. Board

Board is a business intelligence, performance management and analytics platform. These tools exist in a single comprehensive proprietary platform designed to optimize performance, upload data, and create drag and drop interactive dashboards, without coding expertise. Board allows you to configure self-service visualizations and reports and deliver them in different formats. Choose an on-premise or cloud environment. Users are midsize to large enterprises in diverse industries.

Features:

  • provides a business intelligence, performance management and analytics solution
  • built on a  proprietary platform designed to optimize performance
  • installs in on-premise and cloud environments
  • allows access on web and mobile devices
  • requires no technical expertise
  • integrates data from many sources
  • provides drag and drop interactive dashboards
  • configures self-service visualizations and reports in different formats
  • provides solutions for midsize to large enterprises in diverse industries
  • offers a proof of concept for your enterprise: https://www.board.com/en/request-a-poc

Product link: https://www.board.com/en/product

3. Clear Analytics

Clear Analytics is a self-service, business intelligence analytics platform designed for Microsoft Excel. It collects data from other sources and imports it into Excel. It adds Excel features and provides direct access to data using a dynamic query builder. Excel novices can build queries and reports using browser drag and drop features. A central warehouse houses spreadsheets and visualizations, making them easy to share. Owners control who can view them and who has authorization to make edits. Users are enterprises in diverse industries and range from small to large businesses. 

Features:

  • provides a self-service business intelligence analytics solution for Excel users
  • allows access on-premise to users with permission
  • installs on existing application server; dedicated server recommended
  • adds Excel features
  • requires basic Excel knowledge
  • collects and imports data from sources outside Excel
  • allows direct access to data using a dynamic query builder.
  • provides drag and drop dashboards, visualizations and reports
  • houses spreadsheets and visualizations in a centralized location
  • provides solutions for enterprises in diverse industries using Microsoft Excel software
  • offers free trial: https://www.clearanalyticsbi.com/clear-analytics-powerful-self-service-analytics-via-excel/

Product link: https://www.clearanalyticsbi.com/product/

4. ClicData

ClicData is a cloud-based data analytics and business intelligence platform. It cleans and transforms data from various data sources using ClicData’s ETL software. Drag and drop tools create dashboards, visualizations, and reports. Collaboration via emailed Live Link or attached PDF allows for shared dashboards. The owners set permissions which protects data. Users are primarily small to mid-size enterprises in diverse industries.

Features:

  • provides a cloud-based data analytics and business intelligence solution
  • allows access on-web, mobile, and cloud
  • uses ETL software to clean and transform data from many sources
  • centralizes data in a hosted cloud data warehouse
  • provides drag and drop tools to create dashboards, visualizations, and report
  • shares dashboards in emails with ClicData's Live Link or via export as PDFs and images
  • protects shared content with owner assigned permissions
  • provides solutions for small to mid-size enterprises in diverse industries
  • offers free trial: https://app.clicdata.com/help/faq/trial-request

Product link: https://www.clicdata.com/product/

5. Domo

Domo is a self-service, cloud-based, business intelligence platform. It integrates data sources and prepares data for analysis. It then delivers insights, enables collaboration, and provides predictive analytics. Domo’s drag and drop integration and transformation features produce real-time visualizations. To customize both visualizations and pre-built dashboards, technical expertise isn't needed. Users are enterprises in diverse industries and range from small to large businesses.

Features:

  • provides a self-service, cloud-based, business intelligence solution
  • installs in the Domo cloud
  • allows access on web and mobile devices
  • connects all data sources, on-premises or in the cloud, using Domo Integration Studio
  • requires no technical expertise
  • provides drag and drop features for data integration, transformation, and visualization
  • creates real-time visualizations available on all devices
  • provides capability to export visualizations for collaboration with others
  • provides solutions for enterprises of all sizes, in diverse industries
  • offers free trial: https://www.domo.com/start/free

Product link: https://www.domo.com/platform

6. Dundas BI

Dundas BI is a browser-based, end-to-end business intelligence platform. It provides a self-service approach to craft personalized reports and interactive visuals. Dundas BI adapts to user skills providing drag and drop tools for real-time analysis of data. Data and visualizations are accessible on mobile devices as well as on-web. Users are enterprises in diverse industries and range from small to large businesses.

Features:

  • provides an enterprise-level, end-to-end business intelligence solution
  • offers web based server application
  • allows access on web as well as mobile devices
  • integrates data from many sources
  • uses a self-service approach to generate reports and visuals
  • adapts to user skill levels
  • provides drag and drop tools
  • allows for personalization of visualizations and reports
  • delivers real-time analysis of data
  • integrates dashboards for access from web pages
  • provides solutions for enterprises of all sizes, in diverse industries
  • offers a free trial: https://www.dundas.com/support/dundas-bi-free-trial

Product link: https://www.dundas.com/dundas-bi

7. IBM Cognos Analytics

IBM Cognos Analytics is a cloud-based business intelligence and analytics platform. It's web-based proprietary tools are available on-premise or in the cloud. Cognos Analytics imports data from a wide variety of sources. The built-in AI recommendations guide data preparation and insights, which helps create interactive dashboards, visualizations, and reports. Access to content via web, email, and Slack, enables convenient team sharing. Users are enterprises in diverse industries and range from small to large businesses.

Features:

  • provides a cloud-based business intelligence and analytics solution
  • installs on-premise or in the cloud
  • allows access on-premise or cloud
  • requires no specialized expertise
  • shares reports and dashboards through a web page
  • shares visualizations over email or Slack
  • imports data from all types of sources
  • uses machine learning to assess and combine related sources
  • creates interactive dashboards, visualizations and reports with AI recommendations
  • provides solutions for enterprises in diverse industries
  • offers free trial: https://www.ibm.com/account/reg/us-en/signup?formid=urx-34710

Product link: https://www.ibm.com/products/cognos-analytics

8. Looker

Looker is a web-based business intelligence platform that connects to your database. It has LookML syntax which optimizes querying relational databases. Experienced SQL users use the syntax to produce customized queries. Drag and drop dashboard creation is especially helpful to non-technical users. Visualizations and reports are accessible on all devices and can be exported outside the Looker dashboard for collaboration with others. Looker has customers in diverse industries and range from small to large businesses.

Features:

  • provides a web-based business intelligence solution
  • allows access on web and mobile devices
  • installs on-premise or in a Looker-hosted cloud
  • connects to user SQL database or data warehouse
  • provides a proprietary LookML syntax for query optimization
  • provides drag and drop features for dashboard creation
  • creates real-time visualizations available on all devices
  • provides capability to export visualizations for collaboration with others
  • provides solutions for enterprises of all sizes, in diverse industries
  • offers free demo: https://looker.com/demo/free-trial

Product link: https://looker.com/product/business-intelligence

9. MicroStrategy

MicroStrategy is a business intelligence and analytics platform. It provides a self-service data discovery process. You're able to collect data from all sources without technical expertise. Transform data using drag and drop tools and create dashboards, visualizations, and reports. Leverage third party charts to expand the analysis and build advanced metrics as needed. Collaborate with others on-line and via mobile apps. Access data from desktop, cloud, or mobile app. Users are enterprises in diverse industries.

Features:

  • provides a business intelligence and analytics solution
  • allows access on-premise, mobile and cloud
  • collects data from all your sources
  • provides drag and drop dashboards, visualizations and reports
  • integrates third party charts
  • provides advance metrics tools
  • delivers on line and mobile collaboration using built-in tools
  • provides solutions for enterprises in diverse industries, from small to large businesses 
  • free trial: https://www.microstrategy.com/us/get-started/enterprise-evaluation

Product link: https://www.microstrategy.com/us/product/analytics

10. Microsoft Power BI

Microsoft Power BI is a web-based business intelligence platform specializing in business analytics. A collection of three products offer increasing levels of service. Each transforms data and explores and analyzes data, on-premises and in the cloud. Each provides customized dashboards and interactive reports. Power BI connects to your data sources to provide real-time analytics. Progress to Power BI Pro and Power BI Premium depending on your enterprise needs. Users range from small to large businesses.

Features:

  • provides a web-based business intelligence solution platform specializing in analytics
  • offers three platform choices: Power BI, Power BI Pro, and Power BI Premium
  • allows access on web and mobile devices
  • connects all data sources, on-premises or in the cloud
  • collects and stores information in a centralized cloud location
  • allows moving to more intensive suite products as enterprise grows
  • creates real-time visualizations available on all devices
  • provides capability to export reports for collaboration with others
  • provides solutions for enterprises of all sizes, in diverse industries
  • offers free trial: https://powerbi.microsoft.com/en-us/get-started/

Product link: https://powerbi.microsoft.com/en-us/what-is-power-bi/

11. Periscope Data

Periscope Data uses one integrated platform for analytic operation and report creation. An intuitive drag-and-drop interface allows users to perform basic tasks and create reports. Using SQL and Python, users can maximize Periscope's built-in summary statistics. An intuitive interface enables users to explore data and create insightful visualizations by either using Periscope's wide range of options or creating their own. Collaborate via direct link, email, or Slack. Users range from small to large businesses.

Features:

  • provides an end-to-end business intelligence and analytics solution
  • installs in hosted cloud environment
  • allows access via direct link, email or Slack
  • provides an integrated platform for reporting and analytic operations
  • allows advanced analytics using SQL, R and Python
  • provides built-in options for visualizations
  • shares content automatically with customized automated scheduling
  • provides solutions for enterprises in diverse industries
  • offers free trial: https://lp.periscopedata.com/start-free-trial

Product link: https://www.periscopedata.com/platform

12. Qlik Sense

Qlik Sense is a business intelligence and analytics platform. Its proprietary engine combines data from various sources into a single dataset. AI-driven suggestions help create analytics. The engine indexes and understands data relationships as related or unrelated. Using Quick Sense's interactive click-and-go interface for common tasks requires minimal expertise. Experienced coders can use Python to work complex use cases. 

Features:

  • provides a business intelligence and analytics solution
  • installs on-premise and in cloud
  • allows access on-premise, mobile and cloud
  • collects data from on-premise and cloud sources
  • requires no specialized expertise
  • provides a unified interface for gathering and manipulating data
  • assists users with AI-driven suggestions to create analytics
  • creates click and go visualizations and interactive reports
  • centralizes analytics and apps to enable collaboration
  • allows for advanced analytics calculations from R and Python
  • Users: enterprises in all industries, from small to large businesses.
  • offers free trial: https://www.qlik.com/us/try-or-buy

Product link: https://www.qlik.com/us/products/qlik-sense

13. Sisense

Sisense is a web-based, end-to-end business intelligence platform. Its approach to processing analytics provides fast analysis and exploration of data. The BI platform collects and unifies data from your sources and manages data collection, integration, and visualization. Real-time data feeds intuitive dashboards and reports. Sisense requires no specialized user training. 

Features:

  • provides an end-to-end business intelligence solution
  • offers on-premise or cloud installation
  • allows access on web as well as mobile devices
  • requires no specialized user training
  • employs a proprietary chip to drive fast data analysis
  • scaleable for increase in users and datasets
  • integrates data from many sources
  • simplifies workflows creation
  • provides interactive dashboards with real-time data
  • provides insights and visualizations across platforms and devices
  • allows for advanced analytics
  • Users: enterprises of all sizes, in diverse industries
  • offers a free trial: https://www.sisense.com/get/free-trial/

Product link: https://www.sisense.com/product/

14. Style Intelligence

Style Intelligence is a business intelligence platform driven by a proprietary engine. It is a self-service software for preparing on-premise and cloud data. Style Intelligence provides a unified interface for gathering, manipulating, and verifying data. Drag and drop features create dashboards, visualizations, and interactive reports. 

Features:

  • provides a business intelligence solution driven by a proprietary engine
  • installs on-premise and in cloud
  • allows access to data on-premise, mobile and cloud
  • requires no specialized expertise
  • provides a unified interface for gathering and manipulating data
  • provides drag and drop features for creating dashboards and visualizations
  • creates interactive reports using self-service design tools
  • scales for big data applications using an in-memory database technology
  • Users: enterprises in diverse industries, of all sizes
  • offers free trial: https://www.inetsoft.com/business/solutions/big_data_trial/

Product link: https://www.inetsoft.com/products/StyleIntelligence/

15. Tableau

Tableau is a self-service analytics and business intelligence platform. It specializes in analyzing and presenting the data in visualizations, dashboards, and reports. Installation is on-premise, public cloud (using Tableau server), or online (Tableau Online). This tool provides intuitive, self-service analytics for users without technical knowledge. Data integration from a variety of sources creates real-time visualizations in a few clicks. 

Features:

  • provides on-premise, public and fully hosted business intelligence solutions
  • offers three platform choices
  • installs on-premise, public cloud, Tableau cloud
  • allows access on web and mobile devices
  • delivers intuitive, self-service analytics for users without technical knowledge
  • integrates data from many sources, either on-premise or cloud based
  • creates real-time visualizations in a few clicks
  • provides solutions for enterprises of all sizes, in diverse industries
  • offers free trials:

Product links:

16. Yellowfin BI

Yellowfin BI is a web based, intuitive, end-to-end business intelligence platform. It works on-premise or in the cloud depending on enterprise needs. Yellowfin suite products include data preparation, analysis, AI-driven dashboards, and collaboration through reports. Users buy what their business requires. Dashboards present real-time data and drill-downs for further information.

Features:

  • provides a web based, intuitive, end-to-end solution
  • installs on-premise or cloud
  • allows access on web and mobile devices
  • offers individual components or an integrated analytics suite
  • integrates data from many sources
  • delivers an intuitive drag and drop interface ideal for not-technical users
  • provides AI-driven dashboards
  • allows for collaboration through reports and visualizations
  • provides solutions for enterprises of all sizes, in diverse industries
  • offers a free trial : https://www.yellowfinbi.com/campaign/free-trial-try-yellowfin-on-your-own-data-today

Product link: https://www.yellowfinbi.com/suite

17. Zoho Analytics

Zoho Analytics is a self-service business intelligence platform. It is a cloud-based platform with an option for on-premise installation. Zoho connects to a wide variety of sources to collect data. It can auto-merge data from popular business software or via Zoho's self-service tools. Drag and drop tools create dashboards, visualizations, and reports, requiring no technical skills. 

Features:

  • provides a cloud-based, self-service, business intelligence platform
  • installs on-premise or cloud
  • allows access on-premise, mobile and cloud
  • requires minimal expertise
  • collects data from many sources
  • allows for synchronization of automatic data feeds
  • provides drag and drop tools to create dashboards, visualizations, and reports
  • shares reports and dashboards through the web page and app
  • provides a workspace for collaboration
  • provides solutions for enterprises of all sizes, in diverse industries
  • offers free trial: https://www.zoho.com/analytics/pricing.html

Product link: https://www.zoho.com/analytics/

Final Thoughts and Recommendations 

Choosing the best Bi Tool for your business is difficult and takes due diligence. Check the most promising platforms by taking advantage of their free trials. Also, let those who will install, maintain, and use the software, take part in the trial. The best BI Tool will:

1. Deliver the insights your enterprise needs.

2. Fit the expertise levels of your users.

3. Deliver information in actionable formats.

Whichever you choose, the insights you gain from these BI tools will ultimately lead to better market decision making. In order to use these BI tools, you need to have accurate, prepared data from an outside source (ie. data warehouse). If you haven't aggregated your data yet, it would be a good idea to consider integrating an ETL platform. An ETL solution extracts, transforms, and loads your data into a data warehouse for BI insights. Xplenty's cloud-based, on-platform transformation tools allow its customers to clean, normalize, and transform their data while also adhering to security concerns and best practices. Contact Xplenty to learn why this could be your best BI solution.