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How to Choose an Embedded Analytics Platform for Your Product

January 30, 2024

Mile Zivkovic

There are many embedded analytics tools out there, with different features and pricing. Here is how to choose an embedded analytics tool suited for your needs.

Do you want to unlock new revenue streams, provide more value with your product and help your users make more informed decisions? There is only one way to make all of this happen at once - using an embedded analytics platform.

An embedded analytics platform allows you to add an analytics dashboard to your SaaS app and provide real-time insights about data to your users. But if you’ve never used this type of tool, it’s easy to get confused by the complex features and data integration requirements.

Here is the only guide you'll ever need to choose an embedded analytics platform.

What is an embedded analytics platform?

An embedded analytics platform is a tool that allows SaaS companies to embed analytics dashboards and reports into their product.

These platforms are built for SaaS apps that deal with large volumes of data. For example, an email marketing platform can use an analytics dashboard to show statistics such as open rates, click-through rates, bounce rates and more.

Example of an email marketing dashboard

As a SaaS product manager, you can use these dashboards to show your end-users details about their product usage. But why would your product need one? Here are a few key reasons:

  • Helping end-users reach time to value more quickly
  • Increasing product usage
  • Empowering end-users to make data-driven decisions
  • Helping end-users create ad-hoc reports on their own
  • Generating expansion revenue through upsells and add-ons revolving around embedded analytics
  • And many others.

What makes a good embedded analytics solution?

You could try out a few subpar embedded analytics tools and then figure out what a good one needs to have. Or you could read below to learn what the most important features are to have in an embedded analytics solution.

Deep integration in business applications

Embedded analytics tools never function on their own, and they’re usually connected to your product or other tools. 

embedded analytics tools connectivity

The keyword here is “embedded”, which means you should be able to easily integrate the dashboard into an existing SaaS product. The embedded analytics tool needs plug-and-play embedding to do this painlessly.

You should be able to add business intelligence dashboards by just adding a few lines of code. Alternatively, the tool should connect with your own app through APIs or have support for major frameworks like Angular, React or Vue.

Self-service analytics

Embedded analytics platforms are built for data-driven customers. However, most of these customers are not going to be data analytics experts. You need to enable them to create and customize dashboards easily so they can get the right data visualization types for their needs.

This is why a great embedded analytics platform needs to be easy to use: so the end-users can benefit from the self-service options. This way, they can create their own reports and dashboards and explore the data within your app without troubleshooting with your team or taking hours to find the right feature and tool.

API-first

With more and more developers taking an API-first approach, it becomes easier to expand your SaaS platform's capabilities by connecting new external building blocks. If you're building your product the API-first way, you'll want an embedded analytics platform that focuses heavily on APIs as a connectivity option. 

This not only makes the platform more intuitive to work with for developers, it also allows you to connect the platform to a huge number of data sources and other tools, such as ETLs and AI tools offered in your SaaS app.

Personalized user experience at scale

Today’s users demand high flexibility and just having real-time data in a dashboard is no longer enough. They need to be able to create their own workflows and customize the dashboards according to their needs and specific use cases.

But personalization comes in many shapes and sizes. Here are some features and analytics capabilities you should look for in an embedded analytics platform if you want to tailor the experience to your user’s context:

  • Multiple languages
  • Timezones for users across the globe
  • Optimization for different screen sizes
  • Multi-tenant analytics (showing different data based on the users who are viewing the dashboard)
  • User groups with different permissions and data sources
  • Logical and physical data models
  • Being able to pick metrics, visualizations and dashboards according to users’ unique needs
  • Different design and widget placement depending on user needs

In short, the tool should allow you to choose how you experience data, down to the most minute details.

personalized user experience in dashboards

White-label inside SaaS

Most BI tools allow business users to access their data in a dedicated dashboard for internal reporting. But as a SaaS product manager, you want to offer customer-facing analytics embedded inside your platform, not as a standalone tool. A good embedded analytics platform mimics the look and feel of your brand, like it’s an integral part of your product.

White-labeling means that the dashboard has identical design, color schemes, logos and fonts as your product. When your end-user goes to the dashboard section of your product, they should not be able to see the difference between the dashboard and other sections of your platform.

Interactive dashboards with actionable insights

To do complex data analysis with the datasets from your product, your customers will require more than one point of view.

The best embedded analytics tools allow the end-user to explore their data and drill down into charts and visualizations, or trigger activities directly based on a selection in your dashboard. Just look at this fun example, visualizing the characteristics of your favorite songs on Spotify. While you're filtering, for example, to find high-energy songs with high danceability, you'll get a list of matching songs that you can add to a Spotify playlist in one click!

interactive saas dashboards

In other cases, users may want to set alerts when data reaches a certain threshold. Image you're showing your customer a dashboard to track their product inventory. As soon as the items in stock hit below 10%, the user will want to be notified so they can take action immediately.

Moreover, an embedded analytics tool should allow for a collaborative analytics experience, where multiple users can collaborate on data through versioning, leaving comments and annotations, and more.

AI-powered analytics

AI is the future of data analytics, and you want to find an embedded analytics platform that harnesses artificial intelligence, automation and language learning models to empower faster decision-making.

The embedded analytics platform of the future integrates with various AI and LLM models through API and automates chart creation to get insights from raw data more quickly.

Variety of visualizations

Visualizations are the key prerequisite for making data-driven decisions. To make informed decisions, your end-users want to see graphs, charts, scatter plots, histograms and more, instead of raw data.

Most embedded BI tools such as Power BI, Tableau or Looker offer a wide variety of visualizations for data discovery and data exploration. Make sure that the tool you choose has a large selection of visualization types, as well as those visualizations you need the most in your product.

Factors to consider when evaluating embedded analytics platforms

Let’s say you’ve boiled down the choice of your next embedded business intelligence platform to a few providers that meet all your feature requirements. To find out the best one for your use case, these additional factors can help you make a balanced decision.

Ease of use

The embedded BI tool you purchase needs to be user-friendly because there is a very slim chance your end-users are data scientists. Self-service BI should be the deciding feature for your choice of embedded analytics tool, and not just because of your end-users.

Your internal product and support teams should be able to make updates and changes in your dashboards easily and quickly.

Technical complexity

Unless you have that team of data scientists and engineers on board, you should avoid tools that are complex. Most SaaS teams we work with want to create dashboards quickly, without heavily relying on their internal developer resources.

Documentation and support

The tool you choose should have ample technical and business documentation, explaining how to set up a seamless integration between the tool and your product. 

Your developers are going to need to connect the two, and having the right documentation helps them do this in a matter of days instead of weeks.

Business needs and requirements

What do you need an embedded analytics platform for? What are your expectations and what do you want to solve for your end users?

Choose the platform based on whether it can solve the pain points for both you and your customers. On top of that, make sure it integrates well with your existing tech stack. Otherwise, you could face vendor lock-in or pay thousands for complicated data migrations.

Performance and scalability

As time goes on, your user base should ideally be growing as well. Choose a tool that will grow with you and allow you to easily increase the number of users accessing your embedded dashboards.

Your platform of choice should be able to handle large data volumes easily and display cloud-based dashboards in a pinch, without any performance issues.

Compliance and data security

Your data and your users’ data should be secure at all times. And you don’t have to choose an on-premises tool to ensure the maximum security of your data. Just investigate the security options in your cloud-based embedded analytics provider.

Some features you should have include row-level security, single sign-on, role-based access, and flexible user authentication. With the increasing importance of compliance, GDPR and SOC-II certifications are great signals of trust.

Pricing

Hiring data analysts is very expensive, so the tool should be budget-friendly and come with transparent pricing plans. You should know how many users you get for each plan, what connectors you can use and how much money it costs to have the initial setup.

Choosing Luzmo as your embedded analytics platform

At Luzmo, we’ve helped hundreds of SaaS companies build and embed beautiful analytics dashboards. If you’re not certain we’re worth your time, let’s show you why Luzmo is a great choice for an embedded analytics platform.

And the best part is - Luzmo has a solution for all the features and considerations mentioned earlier in this article.

Faster go-to-market

Luzmo saves you money, and not just by having affordable pricing plans. We help you achieve a faster time to market because you can launch your dashboard within a couple of days. You don’t need an additional team of developers who spend weeks on embedding dashboards into your product.

Our drag-and-drop interface, combined with reusable and integratable components, ensures that you can easily plug dashboards into your product. It’s not no-code, but it’s as close as it gets.

Flexibility for development teams

Luzmo is built with an API-first approach. This ensures that our dashboards are easy to integrate with your existing tech stack. We provide SDKs for all major programming frameworks, and you can reuse your authentication system, user roles and other business rules to make your engineers’ lives easier.

Superb user experience for customers

You’ll like Luzmo, but your customers will love it. They can create beautiful, functional dashboards without any knowledge of SQL or complex data analytics tools. Luzmo is super easy to use, even if you’ve never worked with an analytics platform before.

As a result, your product will benefit from higher engagement and you can use your newly built analytics dashboard for upsells and driving expansion revenue.

Luzmo's user experience

Wrapping up

Embedded analytics is one of the most cost-effective ways to increase customer satisfaction and provide more value for your product. But if you don’t choose the right tool for the job, you’ll get the opposite of that: complex implementation, headaches for your developers and dashboards your end-users won’t know how to use.

Choose Luzmo and build beautiful, functional dashboards that your end-users will love using. Get a free demo today and learn more!

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