The business analytics market has gotten pretty big over the last 20 years. There are now dozens of companies touting hundreds of different business intelligence and business analytics solutions. But not all of these solutions are well-suited for the specific needs of software-as-a-service (SaaS) companies like yours. In fact, over 95% of business intelligence and business analytics software available today isn’t suitable at all for embedded SaaS applications. That makes researching and finding the right solution for your business a daunting process.
Making matters worse, there are plenty of BI companies that say they’re embeddable, but in fact only offer a few embeddable features. Finding a business analytics company that’s focused on embedded and SaaS analytics is harder than finding that proverbial needle-in-a-haystack. Fortunately, we’ve compiled a list of five essential things every embedded analytics application needs to be successful. If your potential vendors can’t offer these five things, keep looking.
#1 Access to Modern Data Sources
If you’re a SaaS company, you already know that data has broken free from the confines of SQL tables. That means your analytics solution needs to have two things. First, it must be able to connect to ANY data source, whether it’s structured, semi- or unstructured. There’s a lot of great insights to be gleaned from your dark data, don’t let it go to waste.
The second thing your analytics solution must have is the cloud. Modern SaaS companies are built in the cloud and all of your data lives in the cloud. You need an analytics solution that’s also 100% cloud native and can quickly, easily and reliably connect to all of your cloud data sources.
#2 Scalability and Performance
Your users demand applications that are always available with 100% uptime and near-instantaneous performance. Choosing an embedded analytics platform that can’t scale up to meet these demands can be disastrous. SaaS companies not only need analytics that are 100% cloud native and serverless, but they also require pricing and licensing that don’t prohibit growth and user adoption.
Only by using a modern architecture can your analytics scale without blowing up your infrastructure budget, and only with licensing that supports SaaS companies can you grow without worries.
#3 A Seamless White Label Experience
Nothing derails an embedded analytics project faster than a user experience that feels disconnected from the host application. It’s no longer enough to just place a chart inside of an iframe and call it a day. You need an embedded analytics platform with full white-labeling capabilities, one where every chart, font and color can be customized to perfectly match your existing application. You’ll want to look for responsive designs that automatically adapt to different screen sizes, as well as self-service capabilities that allow users to customize their own experiences to display exactly the types of data they want, in the manner they want to see it. This is how you increase user engagement and how SaaS applications become so sticky their users can’t live without them.
Many platforms will offer some level of customization, but if you can see a difference in how the analytics look and feel, your users will too. Don’t settle for anything less than complete customization, as well as complete white label and self-service capabilities
#4 Developer Friendly Tools
We like to say that your embedded analytics solution should be built for the way you build software. That means being 100% SDLC compliant and having developer-friendly (and DevOps friendly) tools that your team will love working with. If your platform doesn’t include a robust API, prebuilt widgets and lots of training, tutorials and examples to get you started, it’s going to take a long time to get up and running with that first application.
And if your platform doesn’t include multiple instances for development, testing and production, along with easy ways to move applications between the three, that will also dramatically slow down your development efforts and create nightmares for your DevOps team.
Always make sure your embedded analytics platform is developer and DevOps friendly.
#5 A Focus on SaaS Companies
When most analytics companies talk about embedded capabilities, they’re almost always just talking about the embeddable features within their product. But embedding analytics into your application isn’t the end goal, it’s just the beginning. In order to truly be successful, it’s essential that your vendor be able to infuse analytics throughout your organization.
For example, will your vendor share their product roadmap so that you can align your product releases? Do they offer automated release notes that can be easily rolled into your own? What about end user training and support, will they be helping you with that?
We’ve already talked about the importance of keeping your developers and DevOps happy, well, the same applies to product management, customer success and even finance, where your vendor should be offering pricing and licensing that encourages, instead of discourages, user adoption and growth.
This may seem like a long wishlist of items that you couldn’t possibly find in a single embedded analytics vendor. But at Qrvey, infused analytics is all we do, and we’d love to show you more at qrvey.com/demo