7 Best Tableau Desktop Alternatives (Free & Paid)

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When it comes to business intelligence and analytics software, Tableau is undoubtedly one of the best for obvious reasons

However, it’s not all perfect. 

You might notice that it’s incompatible with your company, and that’s fine. 

Also, there are some limits on the cost of licensing, and the solution it offers is not all-inclusive. 

But Tableau is just one of many data visualization tools on the market; several alternatives exist. 

Here are 7 Tableau alternatives (both free and paid) that you should try.

7 Tableau Desktop Alternatives (Free & Paid)

If Tableau isn’t the right tool for your business, here are some better alternatives you should try. 

1. Microsoft Power BI

Figure 1: Microsoft Power BI homepage. (AP/Screenshot)

Microsoft Power BI stole our hearts for its user-friendliness. The UI is impressive, and it delivers top-notch performance for data visualization. But there’s more. 

It’s a fantastic tool for power analytics. 

Now, there are two versions of Power BI. You can either opt for the free version or the paid version. 

If you run a huge company, you’ll be better off with the paid version, as you’ll get 10 GB and a host of other benefits, like the collaboration features. 


●      Has two versions- Free and Paid.

●      Intuitive interface

●      Great tool for power analytics

●      Big Data integration into Power BI web services. 

                            Pros                              Cons
The UI is intuitiveThe desktop version runs at a slow speed.
It has 74 data connectors.Doesn’t support the use of multiple datasets as sources.
It performs organization and analysis tasks well. 

2. Looker

Figure 2: Looker’s Homepage. (AP/Screenshot)

Formerly known as Google Data Studios, Looker is excellent business intelligence software. 

This tool should be your choice if you want to unify your business’s entire Big Data management and Structured Query Language (SQL). 

It functions well in this unification process because it was specifically designed to keep track of your Big Data and Structured Query Language. 

It’s also great for collaboration across teams in your company to forge better data models.


●      Great for Web-based data and SQL

●      Built with three access roles- Developer, Administrator, and Ordinary User. 

●      It has many learning tools to help you learn how it works.

●      Supports importing and exporting of visualization. 

                            Pros                              Cons
SQL modeling ability is impressive.It could be better for smaller teams.
Impeccable technical supportLonger load time on some reports.
Has the relevant tools to customize data experiences. 

3. Sisense

Figure 3: Sisense Homepage. (AP/Screenshot)

Sisense makes it easy for companies to integrate analytics into their workflows and applications. 

Because of its comprehensiveness, newbies may need help working with this tool. 

Nonetheless, it has an excellent learning curve that ensures beginners will be comfortable with it in no time. 

It also gives you enough options to visualize your data. Generally, this software has two parts. They’re Elasticube, the analytical database, and the intuitive interface.


●      Comprehensive

●      Intuitive interface and Elasticube. 

●      Data source preview and mashup.

●      Supports repositioning and resizing visualizations before sharing. 

                            Pros                              Cons
Data visualization is easy and convenient.Doesn’t have the “font formatting” feature.
In-chip processing for operational productivity.Longer load time on some reports.
Supports data combination from several sources for a holistic perspective of the company. 

4. Grafana

Figure 4: Grafana Homepage. (AP/Screenshot)

Although it’s open source, Grafana offers many analysis, tracking, and monitoring features. You can do anything on this software, from data visualization, query, understanding your metrics, and creating and sharing your data and dashboard with your team members. 

But it was primarily crafted for monitoring business metrics. 

The best part is that you can customize it to your taste. It also supports connection with many data sources, including SQL, CSV, MongoDB, Excel, etc. 


●      It can be integrated with multiple data sources

●      Allows for customization. 

●      Solid data visualization tool.

●      Portable dashboards and Graphs. 

                            Pros                              Cons
Alerts collaboration channels in case of a threshold breach.The setup phase can be frustrating at the onset.
Easy to set upRelies on external systems for data collection
Logs are easy to read. 

5. GoodData

Figure 5: GoodData Homepage. (AP/Screenshot)

Just as the name suggests, GoodData was created specifically for data analysis. It works in data integration, modeling, visualization, and reporting contexts. 

This Tableau alternative is not open source or free, as it offers two tiers at different payment plans with unique services and experiences. 


●      Amazing analytics dashboard

●      Data integration from multiple sources. 

●      Various options for visualization.

●      Reporting is automated. 

                            Pros                              Cons
Great for in-depth data analysis.It takes a while to get used to it.
Intuitive user interface.It isn’t easy to adjust data flow by yourself.
Allows the control of user access. 

6. Apache Superset

Figure 6: Apache Superset Homepage. (AP/Screenshot)

Apache Superset is a tool that was created for data exploration and visualization. Anyone can visualize their data on the platform, pulling inspiration from others’ work. 

What I love about this platform is that anyone can visualize their data regardless of their proficiency levels. 

Another favorite feature is that it supports SQL databases. Generally, this tool is scalable and intuitive. 


●      Compatible with SQL databases

●      Custom visualization. 

●      Supports data investigation via running SQL queries.

●      Lightweight. 

                            Pros                              Cons
You retain complete control of user accessibility.Limited visualization formats
Users do not need to know how to codeOnly connects to a small number of data sources
Both are accessible on mobile and web versions. 

7. Cyfe

Figure 7: Cyfe Homepage. (AP/Screenshot)

Cyfe is an all-in-one tool for tracking, analyzing, monitoring, etc. 

This tool comes in handy in various contexts. For instance, it’s useful for campaign analytics, benchmarking, ad-hoc reporting, etc. 

To perform these functions on this software, you’ll need to connect to the relevant data sources to extract the data for analysis. 

Cyfe plays a vital role in helping business owners make better decisions through the insight they’ll get from organizing all their business data into a single platform. 

You can get started on this platform on a 14-day trial before you proceed to choose from the pricing plans.  


●      Tracking and Performance Monitoring

●      Performa data analysis. 

●      Collaboration and report sharing.

●      Helps with data automation. 

                            Pros                              Cons
Offers custom options.You could wipe out your data unknowingly
Supports data visualizationPre-built widgets can’t be customized
Great for tracking and monitoring marketing-related activities. 

What is Google’s version of Tableau?

Google’s version of Tableau was formerly known as Google Data Studios. However, Google renamed it Looker Studio to unify its business intelligence products. Looker Studio has both free and paid versions. Regardless of your choice of version, you’ll get the best out of your data visualization endeavors. 

Is there a free Tableau version?

Yes, Tableau has a free version called Tableau Public. It allows anyone to create and share data visualizations. You can also explore the collection of data visualizations online from across the globe. With so much inspiration available in this online space, you’ll have the chance to hone your data skills. 

Is Tableau Desktop going away?

Tableau Desktop is going to be around. But the team halted the release of new Tableau Desktop personal editions in 2020 and 2021. The personal versions allowed users to only connect to Excel documents or CSV files. 

It also restricts where you save your data visualization. 


With these options, you’ll never have to worry about data visualization for your business. They work as well as Tableau, so you have nothing to lose. 

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