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These days, it’s no longer just big companies collecting tons of data for analysis. Everyone’s gathering and analyzing data to help make better business decisions. Tools for data analysis are great for helping the people in charge of data analysis — product managers or data analysts — know if their business strategies are working or not.

We’ve identified three main types of common data analysis tools: 

  1. Software for big data analysis
  2. Software for product analysis
  3. Analytics platforms

Keep reading to find out more about each one.

Software for Big Data Analysis

Big data analysis is possibly the most complicated type of data analysis. It involves processing extraordinarily large amounts of data (referred to as a data lake or data warehouse) to find patterns and insights. Tools in this section focus on speed and security.

BigQuery is Google’s solution to big data analysis. They offer a cloud-hosted data warehouse with real-time and predictive analytics. Plus, there are easy integrations with the rest of the Google Cloud suite.

MATLAB is a programming language coupled with a computing environment that can handle extremely complicated and technical data analysis. This option is great for those with math and/or computer science background. When used with the Live Editor notebook and MATLAB graphics, this software can go a long way for analyzing complex data.

Software for Product Analysis

Analyzing the way customers interact with products is a huge part of the job for product managers. There’s a huge range of software available. Some of it is focused on website layout and heat maps, some is focused on A/B testing, and others offer session replay and mobile app analytics. It all depends on your product analysis needs.

Google Analytics is one of the most widely used tools for analytics. They offer insights into your users and easy-to-understand data reports. Many use the free version of this tool, but Google also offers an enterprise version via their marketing platform.

Fullstory is software focused on how your customers are interacting with your product. They offer heat maps and session replay, allowing you to actually watch every click and keystroke your customer makes — valuable data for helping alleviate customer pain points.

Amplitude is a product intelligence platform that is focused on providing useful business insights to teams. First, it works to help you understand more about the people using your platform by providing user insights. Then, it offers analytics to help you provide a better customer experience for your customers.

Exploring Data Analytics Platforms

Sometimes, specific software isn’t going to cut it and you want to commit to a full data analytics platform. Fortunately, a lot of those exist. These platforms focus on using a variety of methods to provide business intelligence, data visualization, sales funnels, and marketing analytics

Tableau is a data visualization platform that makes managing data pipelines and building dashboards easy. They integrate seamlessly with data from the cloud, like Salesforce or AWS, or with on-premise databases. Calculations and visualizations can be built simply by using a drag-and-drop editor.

Looker is a big data analytics platform and business intelligence tool from Google. They offer real-time dashboards, reports, and even custom applications. Many business analysts love Looker because their pre-built apps make getting started super easy. Plus, full integration with all of Google’s marketing platform is a huge value-add.

Becoming a Data Analyst

Interested in a career in data analysis? Check out our Data Analyst Nanodegree program. In just four months, you will have all the skills you need — and a full data analysis portfolio — that is sure to land you your dream job.

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Jennifer Shalamanov
Jennifer Shalamanov
Jennifer is a content writer at Udacity with over 10 years of content creation and marketing communications experience in the tech, e-commerce and online learning spaces. When she’s not working to inform, engage and inspire readers, she’s probably drinking too many lattes and scouring fashion blogs.