Your customer data, together at last
April 06, 2016 | Andy Granowitz

Customers interact with your company through many paths — they engage inside your product, open emails, view ads, answer surveys, etc. To understand your customers, you have to combine product engagement with their other interactions.

Unfortunately, it’s difficult to analyze customer data across these different experiences. Customer behavior in your product is usually measured through a 3rd party tracking service or by analyzing raw application logs. Other interactions, like as customer support chats or sales calls, are stored in SaaS apps or homegrown internal tools. You can only access this data through each of their limited reporting UIs, exports, or possibly an API. There’s no magic wand for joining these disparate streams.

There are two common approaches to join these multiple datasets: (1) send all data to one tracking service or (2) move the data to a common place. Sending all the data to a single tracking service, like Google Analytics or Mixpanel, is cumbersome, nearly impossible to implement, and inflexible to query. Dead end.

The better approach is to move all customer data into a common store. Amazon Redshift, Google BigQuery, and Azure SQL Warehouse are our favorite cloud data stores for large scale analytics. They’re fast, easy to manage, and decreasing in price. But moving data from 3rd party sources to these cloud databases is still hard. You have to work with multiple APIs, find join keys, schedule data pulls, handle backfill, etc… It’s a huge headache.

There are two strategies: build or buy. Building your own is complicated - we have a post about it!


Today, thanks to Segment Sources, bringing all of your customer touch points together got easier. They’ve made it easy to pull customer data from many sources, such as Salesforce, Zendesk, and behavioral data from your app or website, into a single warehouse. We worked with Segment to write some starter queries - give them a go. If you’re already using Wagon and connect a Segment Warehouse, you can open these queries right in the app.

Segment will be expanding its Source catalog in the coming months, and you can always check out the current catalog to see the latest additions. We’re excited to partner with Segment on our shared mission to make answering questions with data easy.

We also recommend other tools to help unify your various customer data sets: Fivetran, RJ Metrics Pipeline, and Snowplow – so that you’ll always have access to the data you need in Wagon, no matter how you choose to set up your pipeline.

Modern ETL + modern SQL tools = win!