Segment vs Fivetran

Fivetran is an ETL solution that connects data from multiple platforms into a single location. It is primarily used by marketers with limited technical skills. The major reason for this is to analyze and view it more closely. Fivetran’s mission is to provide software that makes searching and accessing collected data as simple as possible. After data has been collected and stored in a central hub known as the “warehouse,” it can be accessed by running queries.

Segment is a consumer data platform that assists users in collecting, cleaning, and managing large amounts of client data. Customers use Segment because it is simple to obtain, integrate, and manage data. Through this article, the strengths and weaknesses of these tools are discussed in depth.

What are Segment’s Advantages?

Segment allows you to keep track of events that occur when a user interacts with the interfaces. Segment refers to all digital properties you possess as “interfaces,” including your website, mobile apps, and processes that execute on a server or OTT device. When you record interaction data in Segment, you can send it to marketing, product, and analytics applications, as well as data warehouses.

Segment has a feature that allows organizations to simply collect and separate their users’ behavior using their events. Segment also does a decent job of identifying users and displaying their demographics based on a variety of parameters. Segment differs from conventional ETL tools in that it is meant to gather and link customer data from a variety of marketing, analytics, and data warehousing technologies and unify it into customer profiles. It has a connection to a number of SaaS data sources and data warehouse destinations, while not being primarily an ETL tool.

An event in Segment is a series of actions that correspond to a funnel step. A user may be invited, sign up, or even place an order as part of this process. Users can create tracking plans to record the events and attributes they anticipate to collect from Segment sources, as well as identify events that are appropriate to complete. Segment supports locations such as Amazon, Redshift, Google, Azure, Snowflake, and Data Warehouse and it has integrations for a variety of sources, including:

  • Keeping track of and sends events between its supported tools
  • Replicating data from cloud app sources

Customers can track new event sources using Segment’s developer tools, but only the Segment team can create new cloud app sources.

The value proposition of Segment is really straightforward. Rather than having many program codes to track page clicks, clicks, and other metrics on your website or app, you can simply set a segment snippet wherever you need it, and then feed that data into any third-party tool with a single click from the segment control panel. Much more, you can also input historical data.

The disadvantage of vertically integrated analytics systems is that they enclose your data in a walled garden. Segment, on the other hand, prevents data hoarding by allowing you to feed it directly into your own data warehouse at no additional cost.

What are Fivetran’s Advantages?

Fivetran is a simple data intake program. To utilize, you only need to set up the source and destination connections. It keeps track of modifications and hence ensures that the ingested data is backward compatible.

It enables you to centralize data from several sources and manage it directly from your browser. They quickly extract and load your data into your data destination. In contrast to Segments, it moreover offers phone help.

It also features a number of interfaces that allow users to swiftly transmit data to a business intelligence tool or data warehouse. The downtime has been kept to a minimum, and it appears to be improving as the product is improved. Fivetran is likewise concerned with the entire cost of the service it provides.

Fivetran provides a common set of data formats and examines the source data to see if a column’s data type has been provided by the connection. Before publishing to your destination, they try to find an appropriate data type for the data in that column.

Their connectors can create columns that are both expressly and implicitly typed.

The source specifies explicit data types. They don’t presume data if the connector specifies the column data type. Salesforce, to give an example, usually assigns an explicit data type to each field, which later becomes a column in the destination.

Fivetran also determines implicit data types. If the column data type is not specified by the connector, it will be inferred. Because CSV files lack specified types, they must examine the data to determine the data type. In other words, they leverage their data type hierarchy to assign the most appropriate data type automatically. Their technique uses a hierarchy to calculate the data subtype and supertype. They also use the hierarchy to determine the best data type to employ when writing the data to the destination.

What are Segment’s Disadvantages?

Many users have complained that the support tickets necessitate arduous paperwork. Furthermore, because the transition from free to paid is so significant, small businesses may find it difficult to make the transition at all. The user interface can be a little confusing, and learning about business plan options can be difficult. They also put a lot of pressure on people to write evaluations for G2, which isn’t very professional.

FivetranSegment
FocusData Ingestion, ELT Event Tracking, Data Ingestion, ELT
Connection to Data Warehouse/Data Lake?Yes/YesYes/No
SaaS SourcesAbout 90About 35

Some users have also expressed dissatisfaction with the absence of support for major platforms such as DataBricks and some BI/reporting features.

Some integrations don’t let you pick and choose which windows you want to use. For example, you can’t say, “Only provide the data from yesterday.” For example, if you transmit a lot of traffic through one supplier, it will deliver all 7 million records per day.

Some connectors, such as HubSpot, lack required fields/data and it’s unclear how to add them, while some destination connectors have limits that may necessitate rework to get the data flowing. Users may have consistency issues between connectors and at scale, as well as difficulties with data quantities and loading data in single sync, resulting in data changes that are made retroactively.

What are Fivetran’s Disadvantages?

Fivetran has nearly half as many data source integrations as Segment. Users will have to rely on integrations to query data and create reports because Fivetran lacks a SQL workbench and the ability to work with data within the app. In the long run, this number of integrations may not be sufficient.

Fivetran has a sophisticated pricing structure dependent on data usage. Users must calculate their data “rows at rest,” “rows updated,” and “monthly active rows” to determine their pricing tiers, which are based on “credits.” Both new and expert customers may have difficulty navigating their perplexing pricing plan.

Fivetran is unable to deploy pixels for event tracking or assist in the creation of user-profiles and segments, but Segment is able to do so. Furthermore, Fivetran is unable to export events or user audiences to third-party marketing and CRM software.

There is no apparent progress indicator on the front end UI to see how long a refresh will take, therefore you’ll have to enable back end logging in Amazon to see where it is in the sync process and create general completion time predictions.

Because data is not automatically extracted in Fivetran, collecting metrics for analysis from one document to the next might be problematic. If you’re working with other developers, this might be a huge issue because they won’t be able to see the whole management of others if you want to connect certain information to someone else’s document. 

It also lacks various integrations that would broaden the possibilities of data migration and make working with data more extensive, as evidenced by the necessity to work with data to CRM or online security solutions. There are no protocols in place in Fivetran’s dashboard that allow the team leader to examine databases for approval prior to their initiation into the company’s traffic, which might be an issue because it prevents the team leader from creating a secure environment for data evaluations from others.

A Better Alternative: HockeyStack

HockeyStack is an end-to-end analytics tool for SaaS companies. With HockeyStack, you can track and analyze data from the product, sales, subscription revenue, and marketing in one tool and get access to hidden insights, such as the LTV of a piece of content, or the churn rate of each marketing channel along with users’ reasons for churn.

HockeyStack allows you to build dashboards with no code using any metric you need from any department!

HockeyStack’s Features

HockeyStack offers these features with no code:

  • Step-by-step user journey
  • Custom dashboards
  • Funnels and goals
  • Attribution analysis
  • Insights
  • Surveys
  • Revenue analytics
  • Segments

and more

Revenue + Marketing Dashboard
from hockeystack.com

HockeyStack Pricing

HockeyStack has a free forever plan and 3 paid plans. Paid plans have a 14-day trial with a 30-day refund guarantee.

You can check out the pricing page here.

HockeyStack Integrations

  • Paddle
  • Stripe
  • Hubspot
  • Crisp Chat
  • Mailchimp
  • Salesforce (coming soon)
  • Zapier (coming soon)

HockeyStack Pros and Cons

I might be biased, but this is an objective evaluation of HockeyStack’s pros and cons 🙂

HockeyStack Pros

The unique benefit of HockeyStack is its ability to unify your marketing, revenue, sales, and product data using no code. This allows you to uncover unique insights that you wouldn’t be able to by using multiple tools as they cause you to have fragmented data.

  1. You can integrate with Stripe, Paddle, and Hubspot and build every single dashboard that you can think of, using all sales, marketing, revenue, and product metrics.
  2. You can create funnels, goals, and surveys, which are rare to get with other tools on this list.
  3. You don’t need any developers, tracking is cookieless, and the script is small, so it doesn’t increase your site loading time.

HockeyStack Cons

HockeyStack generally lacks reporting features as it’s not focused on agencies and other reporting-based businesses.

  1. HockeyStack doesn’t have weekly e-mail reports
  2. The tool lacks some integrations, such as Salesforce and Zapier. (on the roadmap)

Conclusion

Fivetran excels at making the process of getting data from SaaS apps and cloud services into a data warehouse as simple as possible, removing the need to work with complicated APIs. However, it is inadequate for “real” data integration due to its ELT structure, inability to bring together numerous data sources, lack of transformation and preparation, and hidden expenses.

Segment, on the other hand, may appear to be the greatest option for early-stage enterprises looking to try out a variety of different services. You can stream your data pretty much anywhere with only one integration. It keeps the codebase clean and organized, allowing developers to concentrate on creating new features. They also have some great capabilities like self-hosted data warehouses, but these aren’t really necessary unless you want to take all implementation decisions away from engineers when developing an ETL pipeline… Additionally, using Segment restricts you to their implementation, and you may not always be able to make use of more advanced integration features from external services that would be available if you implemented them directly.

You have learned more about Fivetran and Segment as a result of this post. You also went over a detailed comparison of each platforms’ strengths and weaknesses. This comparison can now assist you in making a business decision.

What is Fivetran good for?

It can automatically maintain ready-to-query schemas and automate in-warehouse transformations, as well as synchronize data from the source to the warehouse and speed up data analysis.

What is the main difference between Segment and Fivetran?

Fivetran provides data sources from across the organization, but Segment’s prebuilt connectors are mostly focused on marketing and sales.

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