Google Data Studio vs Tableau

Google Data Studio vs Tableau is something that confuses a lot of people. How do you pick the best reporting tool? Which of the two software is best for data visualization and interpretation?

If you are wondering about this, we can help you make the right choice. We have created a guide to help you decide whether Google Data Studio or Tableau best fits your requirements. Both tools are used for creating reports and data analysis. We have compared them to help you make an informed decision on the best tool for you.

So, let’s start our Tableau vs Google Data Studio discussion, and compare the two tools in detail.

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What is Tableau?

Tableau is an American software (owned by Salesforce) that allows data visualizations for business intelligence. The tool lets you connect with different databases, and it helps people understand their data. It can be used to generate reports and graphs from the collected data.

Tableau can be used by people of any skill set, however, it requires some engineering experience (i.e. SQL) to make the most of this tool. Also, it can be used by businesses of all sizes, from non-profits to large corporations. With Tableau, companies can digitize their data, and evaluate their real-time performance. 

It can collect data from cloud databases, spreadsheets, and relational databases. The software has the power to generate graphs from the collected data. It also has mapping functionalities. Most importantly, Tableau is a low-cost platform (vs other pricey BI tools) that can be used by anyone.

The Pros and Cons of Tableau

Tableau is a paid data visualization software. You can use it to map data from different sources in the form of graphs. But like every software, it has pros and cons. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of using the software.

High-performing toolAutomatic refresh of reports
Mobile-friendly software (view)No version control
Used by any businessRequires prior knowledge of SQL
Easy to upgradeManual effort to update the data in the back-end
Low-cost solution vs other BI softwareLimited solution for large businesses

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This software offers a lot of unique features, but on the other hand, it has also some drawbacks. For example, it requires the user to know SQL for relational mapping and does not automatically update the data.

The Pros and Cons of Google Data Studio

Google Data Studio Is a free tool that can help you build data visualization reports. This software allows you to connect with various data sources and generate eye-catching reports and professional presentations. You can also find several ready-to-use templates that make it even easier to master the tool.

Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of using Google Data Studio to generate your reports.

User-friendly customizable reportsTakes time and effort to master it
Free SoftwareRequires purchase for 3rd party connectors
Connection with native data sourcesLimit of # data sources- even with paid connectors
Real-time data reportingLacks some functionalities vs other advanced BI tools
Easy to share reportsFewer preset visualizations vs other tools
Mobile App for Looker Studio Pro Users

Google Data Studio Featured Reports - Data Bloo

Despite some cons, Google Data Studio is still one of the most widely used free, cloud-based data visualization tools. You don’t need to install this software, you can simply use it online, and share your reports with all the stakeholders even through your smartphone. You can also use our templates to quickly create your reports with Data Studio and improve your business decision-making in a few minutes.

Google Data Studio vs Tableau: Pricing & Environment

Now that you have looked in detail at the features of both Google Data Studio and Tableau, it’s time to compare the two tools. We created a detailed Google Data Studio vs Tableau comparison table, to help you decide on the best solution. Here is the crux of our Google Data Studio vs Tableau analysis:

PlatformGoogle Data StudioTableau
PriceFree$70 / user per month
UsersUnlimited1 User
Data SourcesMore flexibleMore limited
EnvironmentWebDesktop + Web

As you can see from the above table, Google Data Studio is a free tool, while some features of Tableau require payment. Data Studio allows several users to connect and work on a report, but on the other hand, Tableau allows only one user per account to access it. 

Google Data Studio vs Tableau is also worth discussing in terms of data sources and visualizations, and we will look at that in detail in the next section. Google Data Studio has a much more sophisticated design than Tableau.

While both tools are used for similar purposes, they are quite different in their features and pricing. Which tool you should use depends entirely on your expertise and requirements.

Google Data Studio vs Tableau: Data Sources & Visualizations

When doing a Google Data Studio vs Tableau analysis, you can not skip out the data sources and visualizations. These make the core of any cloud-based data visualization tool. You can not generate reports without data sources or graphics.

The data sources in Google Data Studio are more flexible. Most importantly, you can connect to Google Analytics and other native sources such as Google Ads, Google Search Console, and Youtube Analytics. A lot of websites already use these sources –  so having a tool that enables you to add these (data sources) for free, can make it easier for you to analyze traffic to your site, organic and paid search results, and video channel performance.

On the other hand, visualizations in Tableau are much more advanced than Google Data Studio. It is commonly used as a business intelligence tool and needs better graphical options which the tool provides its users. 

What is better for you?

Now comes the big question in our Google Data Studio vs Tableau discussion. Which tool is better for you? The answer depends on your business, your requirements, your skillset, and your available time and budget.

Tableau is more advanced than Google Data Studio, but it requires knowledge of SQL and it is not very beginner-friendly. However, it is a great tool for business intelligence and bigger companies. 

Google Data Studio may be simpler in terms of visualizations, but the availability of ready-to-use templates makes it easier to use than Tableau. It is also free and dynamic. Google Data Studio is better suited to small to medium companies and individuals.

If you are confused about Google Data Studio vs Tableau, we hope this article was helpful for you. We discussed in detail the two tools, their features, and their prices. You can select the tool that best fits your requirements and seems easier to use. 

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