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Tableau Shopify Integration: How To Connect Tableau To Shopify

Published: August 23, 2021

Updated: December 1, 2022

Support Team Lead at Alpha Serve
Tableau Shopify Connector
Needless to say that to compete in today’s data-saturated world businesses need to continuously gather and analyze big amounts of data. That’s why the usage of business intelligence (BI) systems like Tableau is out of the question for clever company owners. However, to use some important data sources such as Shopify you need additional tools like Tableau Shopify Connector. So here is an instruction on how you can easily perform Shopify Tableau integration.

What Are Business Intelligence Tools

The primary purpose of any business is to maximize profits for its owners or stakeholders, that is to be successful and attract more customers. For this companies have to compete with their rivals. They need a working strategy. And the latter could be done successfully only by analyzing corresponding data. So as you see, to reach the main goal any company has to gather, understand and analyze data. And this is what business intelligence (BI) platforms actually do. These tools help businesses convert information into useful insights to make better decisions. According to Forrester's study, “between 60% and 73% of all data within an enterprise goes unused for analytics”. This means companies that do their best to process as much data as possible can turn this data into their competitive advantage. You may have noticed that simple analytics solutions can also import, analyze and forecast data, however, BI platforms are more dynamic and adapt as you grow your strategy.

The importance of BI solutions for businesses that directly sell products cannot be overemphasized. With tools like Tableau, you can visualize supply changes over time, forecast sales and profits, analyze the results of marketing campaigns, automate reports and share them with all stakeholders, as well as track performance against KPIs easily and without additional efforts.

Why Perform Tableau Shopify Integration

Shopify is one of the most popular sales platforms. The long list of its customers includes such giants as Sephora, Heinz, Steve Madden, Tesla Motors, and Nestlé. There are more than 1,000,000 stores powered by Shopify. 87% of merchants worldwide use the Shopify App Store apps to extend the functionality of their Shopify store with additional features. And it’s not surprising as this tool is simple to use and allows not only building an online store but also developing a multi-channel commerce business, including in-person, retail, marketplace, and social selling. This means your Shopify store generates tons of useful data. And not using it is a crime.

Unfortunately, Shopify itself has quite a limited number of data analyzing features compared to those BI tools can offer. Moreover, the sales platform cannot provide flexible options for data export. If your business is quite big and operates terabytes of data, collecting information from your store for further use with a BI tool like Tableau could be a nightmare. Therefore, using advanced applications for Shopify data export and Shopify Tableau integration may be a good idea.

How To Connect Shopify And Tableau For Effective Ecommerce Data Analysis

Tableau Connector for Shopify developed by Alpha Serve is one of the most convenient solutions to extract necessary data from your Shopify store and use it in a powerful BI platform like Tableau. After app installation you will be able to export any Shopify store data to Tableau and convert it into an understandable format, schedule automated data export regularly or at a specific date and time, combine Shopify store data with data collected from other important sources, track your inventory, and receive up-to-date information about your orders, customers and prices with custom-made Tableau dashboards. It is also possible to select which particular Shopify store data you want to export. In addition to that, you can feel safe about your store data as Tableau Connector for Shopify does not store any customer data.

So, let’s see how you can easily perform your Shopify data analytics in Tableau.
More articles about BI Integrations can be found on Alpha Serve's Medium page.

Step 1: Install Tableau Connector for Shopify

Before starting the installation you must check if you have the relevant Shopify account rights. Once that's done, go to the Shopify App Store and find Tableau Connector by Alpha Serve in the listing of available tools. Then select the Add app button.
Tableau Shopify Integration App
When redirected to the Confirmation page, look through the terms and conditions carefully and if you agree, click Install app. The installation wizard will start and the app will be automatically installed on your Shopify store. After that, you will be able to create the necessary data sources.
Connect Tableau To Shopify

Step 2: Create A Data Source in Tableau Connector

Whenever you want to create a new data source, open the Tableau Connector for Shopify app and press the New Data Source button. You will see a window where you will have to specify some details. First, enter a new data source name. Then add the data source description to find it easily when necessary.

After that you will be asked to schedule data export. 4 options are available. Choose Disabled if you want to activate it manually when needed. The Continuous option allows preparing data constantly. Select Every day to have data sourced updated every day at the selected time. And if you choose Weekly, the data source will be updated only once a week on the selected day and time. Then set up a start time.
Shopify Tableau Integration set up
In the Fields and Filters section, you can further refine your data selection. It includes such options as the account's current balance (Balance), custom collection of products (Custom collection), information about customers, their contacts and order history (Customers), disputes, draft orders, custom metadata (Metafields), orders, payments transactions, payouts, products, groupings of products defined by rules that are set by the merchant (Smart Collections), inventory items, product variants, and product images. You will have to select the checkbox next to the field you’d like to export data from.

Find all fields and tables supported by the Tableau Connector here.

There are built-in filters you can use to select the options you need. Press Add filter and you will see available field selection options in a drop-down menu.

Once finished, click Save to make appropriate changes.
Tableau Shopify Application

Step 3: Prepare Shopify Data

You can see all the data sources you've created in the Data sources tab. To start data preparation for a particular data source simply press the Start button under the Actions menu.
Shopify Data Export to Tableau
To track the progress see the Status column. Here you can see at which stage you are now. When the data processing is launched, it will change to “In Progress”. And when the data is ready for export, the green status “Ready” will be displayed.

You should bear in mind that the speed of data preparation depends on the amount of data. In many cases, it takes only a few minutes to process all the data. However, if you have selected thousands of rows, you may have to wait for several hours until everything is prepared.

Step 4: Import Shopify Data To Tableau

To use your data with Tableau Software, you will need to copy the data source URL generated by the application. For this, simply press the copy button in the Actions menu.
Tableau Shopify Connector by Alpha Serve
Then switch to Tableau Desktop and click Web Data Connector.
Tableau Connector for Shopify
Paste the URL in the web data connector field and click the Enter button.
How to connect Tableau to Shopify
You will be asked to authorize in Tableau. To do this, simply copy your credentials from the Settings tab in the Tableau Connector interface. Then press Log in and Export.
Shopify and Tableau: step by step guide
Credentials from the Settings tab in the Tableau Connector for Shopify interface
After the successful authorization, you will see a screen with selected data source fields. You will need to select the table and drag it to the main screen. Then click Update now and all the information you’ve selected will be displayed. Data will be loaded into your Tableau Software. It may take some time if the amount of data selected is big.
Analyze Shopify data in Tableau
When the Shopify data is exported, you will be able to further use it in Tableau. For example, you can create graphs, dashboards, etc. For this choose the visualization type and select the data you want to see on the graph or dashboard.
Shopify Data visualization in Tableau Software

Final Words

From this article, you now understand that analyzing your Shopify store data can help you better understand customer needs and behavior and improve your products and services accordingly, identify potential issues before they become larger problems, run a more efficient business, and, as a result, increase your profits. For this, you need to connect your Shopify account with a reliable business intelligence platform like Tableau. And the easiest way to do this is to use Tableau Connector for Shopify developed by Ukrainian software company Alpha Serve. This app can be found in the Shopify app store and installed in a couple of minutes on your account. With this tool, you can select the data you want to export, schedule reports, and finally, visualize or analyze your Shopify data directly within Tableau software. There you can also combine your store data with other data sources to get a more clear picture of what is doing with your business.