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.
Informatica offers a portfolio of data integration products as well as tools for master data management, data quality, data cataloging, and API management. Informatica started out with on-premises tools but now offers a cloud platform as well.
About Precisely Connect
Precisely (formerly Syncsort) has a portfolio of applications centered around integrating systems, optimizing data infrastructure, improving data quality, and assuring data availability and security. Precisely Connect, formerly known as Syncsort Connect ETL and before that DMX, is the company's ETL tool.
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 integration, ETL||ETL||Data ingestion, ELT|
|Database replication||Full table; incremental via change data capture||Full table; incremental replication via custom SELECT statements||Full table; incremental via change data capture or SELECT/replication keys|
|SaaS sources||More than 80||Only Salesforce||More than 100|
|Ability for customers to add new data sources||Yes||No||Yes|
|Connects to data warehouses? Data lakes?||Yes / Yes||Yes / No||Yes / Yes|
|G2 customer satisfaction||4.0/5||Not rated||4.8/5|
|Purchase process||Requires 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, SOC 2, SOC 3, Privacy Shield||None||HIPAA, GDPR, SOC 2|
|Data sharing||Yes, through Informatica Cloud||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||Informatica Developer Tool, REST API, Connector Toolkit||API for creating dataflows||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.
Informatica has been an on-premises product for most of its history, and much of the product is focused on preload transformations, which is an important feature when sending data to an on-premises data warehouse. Informatica includes a library of prebuilt transformations and the ability to build custom transformations using a proprietary transformation language.
Precisely Connect provides pre-load transformations on records — such as aggregation, filter, and lookup — and data, including mathematical, logical, text, and date operations. Users define transformations through a graphical interface.
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.
Informatica provides Cloud Connectors for more than 100 applications and databases. The only cloud data warehouse destination it supports is Amazon Redshift. It also support Pivotal's Greenplum on-premises platform. The only data lake destination it supports is Microsoft Azure SQL Data Lake. Developers can create new connectors using Informatica Connector Toolkit.
Precisely Connect supports fewer than 20 data sources — mostly databases, plus JSON and XML files. It can write data to fewer than 20 data sources — mostly on-premises data warehouses, plus analytics platforms like Tableau and QlikView.
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.
Informatica provides three levels of support. Basic Success is available during business hours. Premium Success offers 24x7 support for Priority 1 cases. Signature Support offers 24x7 support for all cases. Documentation is comprehensive. The company offers training through Informatica University.
Precisely provides support through an online support portal, as well as via email and phone. Documentation is available only to customers via the support portal. The company offers online training materials and consulting 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.
Informatica has many products, each of which may have several optional components. The base version of Integration Cloud starts at $2,000 per month. The pricing of add-on tiers is undisclosed. Informatica provides a 30-day free trial for many of its products.
Pricing isn't disclosed.
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.