4 ways Connected Sheets helps SaaS companies leverage data to accelerate growth

By Chris Botello | Head of Solution Architecture

For software-as-a-service (SaaS) companies, making intelligent, data-informed decisions is key to maintaining an edge in the ultra competitive cloud-native ecosystem. Fortunately, by their nature, SaaS companies generate massive amounts of data. Every single day, your customers provide you with valuable data on their behavior and interactions with your software. In fact, this year, the global SaaS workload is poised to reach 380 million – up from 206 million in 2018. All this data can give you insights on everything from purchase and usage patterns to payment trends, churn rates, and more. Effectively leveraging big data enables you to increase conversion rates, drive loyalty and engagement, and reduce churn.

However, while many cloud-native companies are collecting data, it’s often not actionable in a holistic fashion. SaaS vendors are struggling to unlock valuable insights with overly complex legacy workflows and business intelligence solutions that aren’t able to support today’s data-intensive world. SaaS organizations struggle to maximize their data because:

Big data is often inaccessible to business users

Many existing business intelligence solutions require advanced skills in SQL, leaving SaaS teams to field requests to experts to query data. In fact, only 22% of business leaders say their organizations have the ability to offer self-service data analytics tools to users at all levels. This causes bottlenecks and time delays, resulting in slow decision making and undermining the ability to build better relationships with customers. 

Traditional spreadsheets don’t scale for big data

Many SaaS teams still use traditional spreadsheets as their main tool across all activities, but they don’t scale for big data—the higher the volume of data, the slower the spreadsheet processes, leading to more chances for the data to become corrupted and making it practically impossible to glean valuable insights.

Extracting, moving and combining data is cumbersome and introduces the risk of poor data

The time teams spend on non-value-added tasks like manual data gathering, consolidation, verification and formatting leaves little room for the type of analysis and strategic planning SaaS teams need for more profitable customer engagement. 

In addition, these workflows bring with them the risks of accidental data manipulation and stale data. Incorrect data leads to inaccurate forecasting and flawed decision making, which can have costly consequences. Inaccuracy also impacts your ability to deliver the personalized experiences that customers have come to expect.

Fortunately, SaaS organizations can now maximize their data with the combined power of Google Sheets and BigQuery

SaaS teams can now bring the power and scale of BigQuery and the familiarity of Google Sheets together with Connected Sheets. Connected Sheets helps SaaS companies harness and collaborate on massive amounts of data, making it easier to understand and quickly respond to changing customer expectations. It offers familiar tools like pivot tables, charts and formulas, so you can analyze and visualize large datasets to enhance each business area with continuous analytical agility. Connected Sheets helps SaaS teams increase conversion rates, drive loyalty and engagement, and make smarter predictions about customer needs by:

1. Democratizing data analytics

With no SQL skills required, Connected Sheets enables self-service analytics, freeing everyday business users from the time delays and bottlenecks associated with legacy workflows. With the ability to bring together and translate siloed data across an ever-changing and evolving business environment, Connected Sheets empowers everyday business users to glean insights by giving them a comprehensive view of things like user behavior patterns and product and subscription data. This enables teams to better anticipate what offerings and features customers want. For example, uncover answers to questions like:

  • Which features are the most used by a certain industry or demographic?
  • How do users spend their time in my product?
  • What actions do trial users take that make them more likely to convert?
  • And much more…

2. Accelerating speed to insights

Connected Sheets enables SaaS teams to say “bye bye” to manual data gathering. Uncover actionable insights faster and quickly respond to market opportunities and areas for improvement with the ability to access, analyze and visualize billions of rows of BigQuery data in Google Sheets with no performance issues. For example, pinpoint problem areas and more quickly predict and prevent customer churn by pulling in your BigQuery data on frequency of customer complaints, user behavior, feature usage, subscription type and demographics. Analyze this data using pivot tables, charts and formulas and easily answer questions like:

  • Which plan levels have the highest churn?
  • Which behaviors of subscribers are predictive of churn? 

Or, glean insights on low-activity and inactive users to uncover areas for improvement. For example, a sudden drop in user engagement may point to software issues. Or, you may find that inactive users share certain qualities, such as location or belonging to the same industry. 

3. Ensuring you have the most up-to-date data

SaaS companies need to engage with their customers and adapt to their demands in real time. Connected Sheets makes this easy by enabling event-based, real-time decision making. The live connection to BigQuery means data is easy to refresh and always up-to-date, so you can deliver on-the-mark, personalized audience experiences, generate tailor-made offers and increase engagement and spending. For example, improve ad targeting by analyzing conversion data to uncover which demographics are responding well to a particular campaign. Use these insights to adjust campaigns on the fly by optimizing accordingly. 

Connected Sheets also enables you to spend more time on analysis and strategic planning with scheduled refreshes that improve workflows and streamline reporting and dashboard creation. For example, use scheduled refreshes to pipe data into marketing dashboards—for search, social, email, traditional media and more—that can be updated automatically with the freshest data every single day (or as often as you’d like).

4. Enabling secure sharing and collaboration

With Google Workspace’s enterprise-grade security, sharing and collaborating on insights in Connected Sheets is risk-free and easy. You can control permissions to limit who can view, edit or share, and users can perform analysis in the sheet without fear of jeopardizing the integrity of the data in BigQuery. Share and collaborate on insights cross-functionally to build a data-driven culture that taps into collective intelligence. For example, share dashboards with marketing to help determine the best time to run promotions.

Unleash the full power of your data with SADA

Our experts can help you mobilize Connected Sheets and leverage your big data assets for more profitable customer engagement. As a two-time Google Cloud Global Partner of the Year and recipient of the Google Cloud Data Analytics Partner Specialization, we’ve helped leading SaaS organizations accelerate their data analytics priorities. If you’re looking to solve smarter with data, let’s talk.

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