As businesses face ever-growing amounts of data, finding the proper resources for data analytics is becoming increasingly important. Here, we've assembled a list of the top 31 tools to help optimize your analytics in 2020.
We all want to base our business decisions on facts. To enable data-driven decision-making, finding the right tools for data analytics is crucial. Because data without analysis is useless. Then it's just a pile of information, without context and meaning.
Data analyzed and leveraged in the right way, on the other hand, will give your company a clear competitive advantage. No wonder a recent report indicates that the data analytics market will grow at a CAGR of 30.08% from 2020 to 2023, equaling $77.6 billion. The same report shows that the global analytics market has more than doubled in value over the last four years.
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Table of Contents:
- Define Your Use Case Before Choosing A Tool
- What is the Best Tool for Data Analytics?
- The Top Data Analytics Tools for 2020 (Complete List)
- ETL Tools
- OpenSource Tools
- Visualization Tools
- BI and Analytics Tools
- Social Media Analysis
Define Your Use Case Before Choosing A Tool
Finding the right tools for data analytics can be challenging. But before you go tool-shopping, it's essential to define your use case and what you want to achieve. There are pros and cons with most solutions, and to make the right choice, you need to know what your goals are. What is it that you need to analyze, and why? What sources will the data come from, and what format would you like to turn it into?
Here are some examples of common use cases for data analytics:
- Improve operational efficiency
- Gain market insights
- Evaluate marketing campaigns
- Gather security intelligence
- Create a 360° view of your customer
- Price optimization
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What Is The Best Tool For Data Analytics?
Different goals require different strategies, and different approaches require different tools. When exploring what tools you need, it's essential to keep the whole data pipeline in mind and make sure that the various components in your tech stack integrate with each other for seamless workflows.
It's also important to decide what kind of visualizations and reports you will be needing. Sometimes visualizing the necessary analytics will take separate tools, and sometimes you can get it all in one platform. There's no right or wrong; it all depends on your company's specific needs and challenges.
To help you out, we've listed the top 31 tools for data analysis, grouped them by type, and outlined what sets each of them apart from the rest.
The Top Data Analytics Tools For 2020
- Apache Spark
- Google Data Studio
- IBM Cognos
- Jupyter Notebook
- Microsoft Power BI
- Periscope Data
- SAS Business Intelligence
- SAS Visual Text Analysis
- SAP BusinessObjects
- Sky Tree
- Tibco Spotfire
- Oracle Analytics Cloud
ETL is short for Extract, Transform, Load. These are tools that enable ETL pipelines and are suitable when businesses need to extract data from one or several sources, then transform it so the right format for final storing and analysis.
Xplenty is a cloud-based ETL and ELT (extract, load, transform) data integration platform that easily unites multiple data sources. The Xplenty platform offers a simple, intuitive visual interface for building data pipelines between a large number of sources and destinations. Xplenty streamlines data processing and saves time, allowing your business to focus on insights rather than on preparations.
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Talend is a tool made for automating data integration, filtering, and data management. With Talend, large data libraries can be handled with ease, enabling quicker completion of big data projects.
The Oracle Analytics Cloud is a suite of cloud-based business intelligence and analytics apps. This is mainly a platform for large enterprises, as they take the step from on-prem solutions into the cloud. A wide range of features is included in the platform, from simple visualizations to machine learning algorithms and advanced analytics.
The SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence suite is a range of applications and tools for data analysis and reporting. SAP's integration with Microsoft Office makes transitions between Office tools like Excel and the SAP platform seamless. This platform works for businesses of all sizes and for users who are not necessarily technically trained. At the same time, the suite allows for complex business analysis when needed.
Qlik is a self-service data analytics and business intelligence platform. With Qlik, you can combine and load data, create visualizations, and drag and drop to build analytics apps, powered by AI-generated suggestions. Qlik claims to be developing "a new breed of AI — one that amplifies the power of human intuition with the scale and speed of machine intelligence" that they call AI, Augmented Intelligence. Building on associative technology, the Qlik Cognitive Engine provides context-aware suggestions that can help users discover hidden patterns and insights.
With drag-and-drop tools and interactive dashboards, Sisense is a useful tool for collaboration around data analysis. Aiming to empower developers, data engineers, and business analysts to simplify complex data and transform it into analytic apps, this platform is a self-service tool that works regardless of where the data is stored initially. A unique part of the Sisense offering is In-Chip technology, a custom technology that optimizes for CPU use, rather than the use of the slower RAM. This can, in some cases, speed up computation processes significantly.
Splunk focuses on providing entire organizations with real-time data insights. By pulling all text-based log data and providing ways to monitor and perform searches in it, Splunk gives users easy access to all kinds of interesting statistical analysis.
Open Source Tools
Open-source tools are a type of computer software where the source code is released under a license. The copyright holder allows anyone the right to use, study and change the software, as well as distribute it to anyone and for any purpose. Open-source software is often developed in a collaborative public manner.
Apache Spark is an open-source tool built for data analysts. This service allows for the creation of large datasets, and the analytics reports to go with them. Compatible with all major programming languages like SQL, R, Python, Scala and Java, Apache Spark can help you speed up internal operations, and runs on all kinds of devices, operating systems, and applications. The number of Apache Spark contributors exceeds a thousand names; an expert community than you can connect with via email or Jira if needed.
This free and open-source web app enables developers to create reports and visualizations from live code. The platform supports more than 40 programming languages. And while Jupyter Notebook — formerly IPython Notebook — was initially programmed in Python, there is a large community of developers using a wide range of other languages.
KNIME is a free and open-source platform for integrating, processing, visualizing and reporting data. KNIME (Konstanz Information Miner) is a handy tool when you need to integrate and process data for machine learning or create other statistical models. It doesn't require strong programming skills and has an intuitive and user-friendly interface with point-and-click analytics.
Metabase is a free and open-source analytics and BI platform where the less tech-savvy stakeholders can "ask questions" and gain insights about relevant data. This is a way to make intel more accessible to everyone, and if you need more in-depth and more granular insights, there is always the possibility to use raw SQL for your analysis.
RapidMiner is an open-source tool with extensive add-ons and in-depth data analytics capabilities. RapidMiner automates analytical processes and streamlines operational procedures, allowing users to focus on interpreting data.
Redash is an open-source coded platform for querying data sources and building visualizations. At the heart of the platform is the query editor, with an intuitive and user-friendly interface for making queries and managing integrations. Results are saved in Redash, and regular updates can be automated.
When you need to report complex insights to other stakeholders, visualization tools are valuable. They help make complicated data comprehensible and provide you with reports that are quick to produce.
Chartio is a self-service BI platform that has a unique visual representation of SQL, allowing for convenient point-and-click queries. This enables analysts who don't know SQL syntax to make queries without having to learn the language. Chartio also integrates neatly with several data warehouses, which makes it easy to import files and spreadsheets.
This analytics platform offers a user-friendly and iterative tool, with an interactive SQL editor and notebook environment for analysis. There are also visualization and collaboration tools that are easy to use, even for those who are a bit less technical. The data engine "Helix" streams data from external sources and stores it to speed up analysis.
FineReport is a self-service reporting and dashboard tool that makes your analytics accessible and straightforward. The drag and drop design allows for a range of different reports, and building systems for analysis is easy and intuitive. With FineReport you can connect directly to various databases, and quickly create weekly, monthly and annual reports. This tool shares some traits with Excel and includes features for report management, data entry, and permission assignment.
Infogram is a tool focused on helping data analysts present reports in a simple, visually appealing slides, charts, dashboards, and infographics. Infogram is an excellent platform if you're looking to create attractive reports. It's an easy-to-use tool that comes in handy when complex data needs to be communicated to a wide range of stakeholders.
Tableau is another data visualization tool, and what stands out about this platform is the simplicity. The drag-and-drop function allows users to customize and rearrange elements of data visualization elements, actions that translate into efficient back-end queries making advanced data calculations relatively effortless.
This platform is prominent in the field of natural language processing. When you want to know what your audience says about your company online, this tool can help. It uses machine learning, linguistics, and natural language processing, to identify and analyze the sentiment of content posted online.
Spotfire enables users to visualize and analyze their data without the need for IT support. It's a platform with natural language search and AI-powered data insights that supports a wide range of use cases. With Spotfire, you can build dashboards and perform predictive and real-time analytics. With comprehensive visualization features and a user-friendly point-and-click feature, Spotfire allow you to publish reports to mobile as well as desktop apps.
BI and Analytics Tools
BI and analytics tools comprise a wide variety of solutions to help companies make sense of the massive amounts of big data gathered by every modern organization. They often overlap with ETL and visualization tools.
Looker is a platform for business intelligence and data analytics. It's cloud-based and offers custom applications, embedded visualizations, and data science workflows (among other things), enabling secure delivery of data and analytics to the right stakeholders. Looker features automatic data model generation, and data engineers can then work from and modify the generated models using the built-in code editor.
Periscope Data is an analytics platform that helps users answer complex business questions by quickly connecting to data sources in the cloud and use R, SQL, and Python to analyze data. Periscope Data supports integrations for a variety of data warehouses and databases, and analysts can work with and transform data using R, SQL, or Python. At the same time, the platform is user-friendly enough to let less tech-savvy users create and share dashboards.
This BI platform features built-in AI tools to help translate analytic insights into more understandable messages. Automated and AI-assisted data preparation saves time and allow users to cleanse and combine data sources in minutes, and to experiment with them for analysis.
Google Data Studio is a dashboard tool for creating reports that are easy to use, customize, and share. It's a convenient tool for tracking business KPIs and for generating periodic reports. The platform integrates with most of Google's other app, which makes it a very suitable tool for analyzing Google data.
Grafana is a free, open-source platform for data monitoring and analysis. Grafana can be used to observe metrics from different databases and applications simultaneously, providing real-time insight and alerting capabilities. DevOps teams often use Grafana to monitor their systems and to analyze usage of them.
SAS BI is a suite of self-service apps for data analytics. Automated analysis, backed by machine learning, with easy-to-understand natural language explanations, enables users to explore relevant data and spot hidden relationships visually. The platform has built-in collaboration features and smart workflows. SAS BI is a versatile platform, mainly targeting larger enterprises, while smaller companies may find it too expensive.
Microsoft Power BI is a well-known platform for business intelligence, with multiple use cases. Power BI supports a wide range of data sources and provides efficient tools for visualization. Dashboards, reports and charts can be organized and group in apps, allowing for easy access for all stakeholders. In the system, users can create their own machine learning models integrated wit the Azure platform for machine learning.
Skytree is a data analytics solution suitable for small and mid-sized businesses. The platform is made for smaller teams and aims to make predictive machine learning mechanisms more accessible. Skytree works for data accumulation, data filtering, and data visualization, but also for predictive analytics based on AI, and for creating customizable sets of algorithms.
Thoughtspot is an analytics platform that makes it easy to embed dashboards and custom chart into your own business portal or app. It allows users to analyze data from a wide range of sources, using an AI system to discover patterns, trends, and tendencies.
Social Media Analysis
Social Media often requires is a specific set of tools. Many of the solutions for social media analysis can be integrated with other platforms. Social media data can also be extracted by an ETL tool.
Not only is Hootsuite a popular online marketing platform for social media. Hootsuite also boasts powerful data analytics tools. Hootsuite is for your social media analytics exclusively, but in that specific niche, the tool is convenient. The platform works for exploring and analyzing almost any type of social data, including social posts, links, comments and much more. You get access to all of it from a single dashboard, and all-in-all it is a convenient solution for managing, monitoring and analyzing your social media activities.
SEMrush is a platform for online visibility management and content marketing, enabling businesses to optimize their online presence. SEMrush offers not only extensive data but useful insights analytics on every aspect of a company's digital presence. More than 40 tools within the software and granular custom dashboards, combined with data for more than 140 countries, make this a valuable resource for anyone in digital marketing. The integrations with Google and various task management platforms allow for seamless and efficient workflows.
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