Most businesses have data stored in a variety of locations, from in-house databases to SaaS platforms. To get a full picture of their finances and operations, they pull data from all those sources into a data warehouse or data lake and run analytics against it. But they don't want to build and maintain their own data pipelines.
Fortunately, it’s not necessary to code everything in-house. Here's an comparison of three such tools, head to head.
Alooma is a cloud-based ETL platform. Formerly independent, it was purchased by Google in 2019.
CloverDX (formerly CloverETL) is a data integration platform for designing and running data jobs through a graphical user interface.
Stitch Data Loader is a cloud-based platform for ETL — extract, transform, and load. More than 3,000 companies use Stitch to move billions of records every day from SaaS applications and databases into data warehouses and data lakes, where it can be analyzed with BI tools. Stitch is a Talend company and is part of the Talend Data Fabric.
|Focus||Data ingestion, ETL||Data integration||Data ingestion, ELT|
|Database replication||Full table; incremental via binary logs or SELECT/replication keys||Full table; incremental replication via replication key fields||Full table; incremental via change data capture or SELECT/replication keys|
|SaaS sources||About 20||Only Salesforce||More than 100|
|Ability for customers to add new data sources||No||No||Yes|
|Connects to data warehouses? Data lakes?||Only Google BigQuery||No / No||Yes / Yes|
|G2 customer satisfaction||4.0/5||4.0/5||4.8/5|
|Purchase process||Requires a conversation with sales||Requires a conversation with sales||Options for self-service or talking with sales. Also available from the AWS store.|
|Compliance, governance, and security certifications||HIPAA, GDPR, SOC 2, OAuth 2.0||GDPR||HIPAA, GDPR, SOC 2|
|Data sharing||No||No||Yes, through Talend Data Fabric|
|Vendor lock-in||Annual contracts. No open source||Month to month or annual contracts. Open source integrations|
|Developer tools||Python API||HTTP API and SOAP Web Services API||Import API, Stitch Connect API for integrating Stitch with other platforms, Singer open source project|
Let's dive into some of the details of each platform.
Alooma lets developers transform data within the data pipeline before loading via Code Engine, an in-browser Python environment.
CloverDX (formerly CloverETL) provides a wide variety of pre-load transformations through a drag-and-drop interface. Developers can modify or write transformations using Java or CloverDX Transformation Language (CTL).
Stitch is an ELT product. Within the pipeline, Stitch does only transformations that are required for compatibility with the destination, such as translating data types or denesting data when relevant. Stitch is part of Talend, which also provides tools for transforming data either within the data warehouse or via external processing engines such as Spark and MapReduce. Transformations can be defined in SQL, Python, Java, or via graphical user interface.
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Connectors: Data sources and destinations
Each of these tools supports a variety of data sources and destinations.
Alooma integrates with about 30 databases and SaaS data sources. Customers can request that Alooma build a new data source, but no one outside of the Alooma team can build new data sources or make improvements to existing sources. It used to support several data warehouse and data lake destinations, but since the company was purchased by Google, new Alooma customers can use only Google Cloud Platform as a destination.
CloverDX supports fewer than 20 data sources. Most are various filetypes; databases and Hadoop are also supported. It can write data to databases and files, but it supports no data warehouses or data lakes.
Stitch supports more than 100 database and SaaS integrations as data sources, and eight data warehouse and data lake destinations. Customers can contract with Stitch to build new sources, and anyone can add a new source to Stitch by developing it according to the standards laid out in Singer, an open source toolkit for writing scripts that move data. Singer integrations can be run independently, regardless of whether the user is a Stitch customer. Running Singer integrations on Stitch’s platform allows users to take advantage of Stitch's monitoring, scheduling, credential management, and autoscaling features.
Support, documentation, and training
Data integration tools can be complex, so vendors offer several ways to help their customers. Online documentation is the first resource users often turn to, and support teams can answer questions that aren't covered in the docs. Vendors of the more complicated tools may also offer training services.
Alooma provides support via Zendesk through a form on its website. Documentation is comprehensive. The company doesn't provide training services.
CloverDX provides support through email and an online ticketing system. Documentation is highly technical. The company provides in-person training services.
Stitch provides in-app chat support to all customers, and phone support is available for Enterprise customers. Support SLAs are available. Documentation is comprehensive and is open source — anyone can contribute additions and improvements or repurpose the content. Stitch does not provide training services.
Alooma doesn't disclose pricing.
CloverDX pricing is undisclosed.
Stitch has pricing that scales to fit a wide range of budgets and company sizes. All new users get an unlimited 14-day trial. Standard plans range from $100 to $1,250 per month depending on scale, with discounts for paying annually. Enterprise plans for larger organizations and mission-critical use cases can include custom features, data volumes, and service levels, and are priced individually.
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Which tool is best overall? That's something every organization has to decide based on its unique requirements, but we can help you get started. Sign up now for a free trial of Stitch.