What is Sisense and Who Should Use It?

Data Visualization
Apr 18, 2024
What is Sisense and Who Should Use It?

Finding a capable data analytics platform for your business is incredibly difficult - even more so if you’re looking for something with a strong embedded analytics focus. In fierce competition, Sisense stands out as one of the top business intelligence tools for embedded dashboards in SaaS products.

Today, we’ll give you an overview of Sisense, its main features, and its ideal target audience.

What is Sisense?

Sisense is a business intelligence tool built for businesses of all sizes. It was launched in 2004 and up until 2010, they built tools for others. In 2010, the first public product came out and by 2012, they moved operations from Israel to the United States.

In 2024, Sisense has over 800 employees, and more than $100 million in revenue, and it is widely recognized as one of the top competitors for embedded analytics in the world of SaaS.

Sisense packages and plans

Sisense is a cloud-based analytics platform and while the primary focus is on the embedded functionality, there is more to this tool. We can make the distinction between three main packages:

  • Sisense Cloud
  • Sisense Fusion Embed
  • Sisense Compose SDK

Each one is geared towards a different target audience.

Sisense Cloud

This option is aimed at businesses that currently have complex on-premise analytics and want to move to the cloud. Perhaps they’re starting from scratch or moving from something like Tableau Online.

Once you connect your data sources, you can do some data modeling and analysis and then visualize the data in the cloud for various needs and workflows, such as data forecasting, detailed data exploration and more.

It offers a host of useful features, from easy scalability where you can add collaborators and datasets as needed, to collaboration options to help your team become more efficient in the cloud. Sisense also promises product maintenance and regular feature updates.

With this package, Sisense aims to take a bite into the Power BI and Tableau market, but according to Sisense themselves, only about half of their customers use Cloud.

PS. we also have an overview of Sisense vs Power BI on our blog, as well as Sisense vs Tableau.

Sisense Fusion Embed

When we talk about embeddable dashboards in Sisense, this is primarily what comes to mind. The basic unit of measurement is something called Elasticube - a high-performance analytics database that helps Sisense quickly query your data every time an end user needs to pull a dashboard.

You can control which end users have access to Sisense dashboards, thanks to single and multi-tenant architecture. Sisense also promises easy customization, including the colors, fonts, images and overall user experience, so that the dashboard you’re embedding matches the rest of your product. As we’ll see in a minute, this is not what the app delivers.

Dashboards can be embedded into apps with APIs, iframes and SDKs.

Sisense Compose SDK

If you’re willing to go knee-deep into Sisense waters, Compose SDK is their software development kit that practically does the same thing as Fusion Embed, but in a more streamlined way.

Compose SDK is a set of client-side libraries and components that let you compose queries, visualize data and get the most out of your Sisense account. 

At the moment of writing this article, Compose SDK is still fairly new so we don’t have any conclusive thoughts from data experts using this kit. However, Sisense promises a lot: the ability to create queries, charts, and filters directly from the app code, customizing and upgrading components through Sisense, access through GitHub, Typescript support and more.

Who is Sisense for?

If you’re a data-driven business looking for your next business intelligence software, Sisense may seem like a superb choice. Here are the kinds of businesses that should pick Sisense over other BI tools.

Large companies with teams of data experts

To get advanced analytics out of Sisense, you have to be ready to A) do a lot of learning or B) have a team of data analysts, engineers, and scientists with previous Sisense experience.

Sisense is known for a couple of things but ease of use is not one of them. While the tool may seem user-friendly for end-users, developers and data experts state that it’s anything but. There is a steep learning curve and the documentation is not that great.


Unlike Tableau or Power BI, there is no strong community to lean into and troubleshoot in case you run into problems. Customer support can help, but you’ll have to do a lot of the work yourself.

Companies that don’t need lots of dashboard customization

Sisense prides itself on real-time dashboards with the most relevant metrics and KPIs for a SaaS business. The problem is that what you get out of the box is pretty much the best version of Sisense data visualization.


Changing the graphs, widgets, fonts or doing any kind of dashboard formatting is pretty complex and you’ll need to wrangle quite a bit of code to customize anything. Knowledge of Javascript is necessary for any modifications to default dashboards.

And this is bad enough for on-premise dashboarding. The same applies to embedded use cases. In other words, you can embed a dashboard relatively easy, but customizing it to match the rest of your product is going to take lots of developer resources. 

Companies that need AI-driven analytics insights

Not everyone in your company can handle complex data analytics, which is why tools like Sisense offer machine learning and AI features. The premise is simple: allow the end-user to ask a question in plain English and get an answer based on the data you analyzed.

However, you will need to do significant data analysis, preparation and modeling beforehand. Just like ThoughtSpot, the idea is great provided that a team of data scientists already prepared the data before you can ask Sisense questions using their AI feature set.

Businesses with diverse data sources

Whether you need to pull data from a data warehouse or need direct data integration with a third-party app, Sisense has a large choice of both. 

In terms of databases, it connects with PostgreSQL, MySQL, and other SQL databases. When it comes to data warehouses, there are Amazon Redshift, Vertica, Google BigQuery, Snowflake, and others.

As for third-party apps, the selection is varied: GitHub, Gmail, Airtable, Apache Phoenix, Clickhouse, Facebook Ads… You name it, Sisense has it.

What about Sisense pricing?

Like many business intelligence software vendors, Sisense hides their pricing so you can only get a quote once you talk to the sales team. If you’re comparing Sisense offers with something like Tableau by Salesforce or Microsoft’s Power BI, good luck.

When we talked about Sisense pricing recently, we showed that does not have pricing listed publicly. However, our research has shown that the minimum you can expect to pay is $10,000 per year, which is more likely to be $20,000 and up if you have a bigger number of end users.

If you’re a large enterprise business, Sisense might fit your budget. It’s one of the more expensive visualization tools out there.

Is Sisense the right choice for you?

If you want actionable insights from interactive dashboards with good data analysis features, Sisense is a solid choice. If you look beyond the machine learning capabilities, you’ll see that Sisense is not as enticing as it sounds.

This is especially true for startups that want data visualization features in their SaaS app and want it quickly.

If you need intuitive dashboards for your SaaS business users, get Luzmo instead. We’re easy to embed, have lots of connectors and visualization choices, and most importantly, we have transparent pricing.

Grab your free trial of Luzmo and see it for yourself!

Mile Zivkovic

Mile Zivkovic

Senior Content Writer

Mile Zivkovic is a content marketer specializing in SaaS. Since 2016, he’s worked on content strategy, creation and promotion for software vendors in verticals such as BI, project management, time tracking, HR and many others.

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