Benefits and Insights

Why use Tableau?

Key differentiators & advantages of Tableau

  • Powerful Visualizations:The quality of Tableau’s data visualizations is world-renowned. It converts unstructured data into comprehensive logical results, then displays them in interactive and visually appealing dashboards.
  • Ease of Use: Tableau’s user-friendly UI allows users without prior technical knowledge or skills to analyze their data through intuitive drag and drop functionalities and natural language processing.
  • Faster Analytics: Tableau can connect to, extract and visualize data in minutes. Its prep builder tool uses machine learning to recommend smarter, more time-efficient data cleaning.
  • Explores Any and All Data:The solution can pull and blend information from an unlimited number of data sources, from text, Excel and PDF files to an extensive list of database servers.
  • Find the “Why”: Tableau can automatically provide AI-driven explanations behind specific data points with a single click, going beyond trends to dig deeper when making data-informed decisions.
  • Low Cost: Tableau’s pricing is relatively low in comparison to other competitors in the business intelligence industry.
  • Innovative Updates: Tableau updates the platform regularly, always seeking to add new features and improve existing ones.
  • Multi-Layered Security: Tableau offers row-level security to restrict the rows of data certain users can see in a workbook, as well as additional permissions management features. It maintains compliance with SOC 2 and SOC 3 security protocols and is a certified participant in the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework.
  • Ready for Mobile: In an increasingly mobile digital world, Tableau offers users freedom and flexibility with a native mobile application on both iOS and Android platforms.
  • Customer Resources: As a front runner in its field, Tableau offers customers an ample variety of support options, including a large library of learning materials, how-to guides, videos and more. In addition to a thriving insight community and forums to answer questions quickly, Tableau also offers training to maximize the user’s investment.
  • Free Trial: Tableau offers a 14-day free trial of its fully functional program.

Industry Expertise

Tableau is implemented in a wide range of industries. These include communications, healthcare, financial services, staffing and recruiting, retail, government, higher education and many more.

Key Features

  • Drag and Drop Visualizations: Users can explore data trends, correlations and analyses by building their reports quickly with drag-and-drop ease.
  • Augmented Data Preparation: Tableau uses machine learning to make self-service data prep an automatic process that reduces manual work in cleaning, combining and shaping data to turn it into insights.
  • Data Source Integrations: Tableau pulls information from a variety of relational, semi-structured and raw data sources. Upon launch, ready data connectors can connect to data on premise, stored in a file or database server or in the cloud via sources such as Google Analytics, Salesforce or Amazon Redshift.
  • Real-Time Access: Tableau automatically refreshes information from web apps and cloud databases, and supports live queries of data.
  • Interactive Dashboards: Users can build responsive dashboard visualizations of their data. Tableau allows users to customize these dashboards to be interactive and call attention to certain stats by highlighting the information. Users can also share this data with colleagues or customers, allowing them to explore the data on their own.
  • Natural Language Processing: Tableau offers an “Ask Data” feature that lets users ask questions in natural language and instantly get a response in the form of data visualization. This enables those without coding experience to easily submit queries and interact with data.
  • Recommended Visualizations: Tableau’s “Show Me” feature recommends visualization types to users, starting with a palette of all available visualization options, then allowing users to narrow the selection of available visualization types based on the data they wish to explore. Tableau then highlights the recommended approach based on the data selected for analysis.
  • Role-Based Permissions: Tableau enables users to see and understand insights, with different visibility based on their role.
  • Geographic Data Analysis:Tableau has built-in geographic capabilities that help users get to the “where” as well as the “why,” turning location data into rich interactive maps.
  • Role-Based Permissions: Tableau enables users to see and understand insights, with different visibility based on their role.
  • Smart Analytics: Tableau suggests tables, joins and sources based on data connection patterns and user behavior analyzed through machine learning. It also provides view recommendations that match user preferences. Through “Explain Data,” Tableau can leverage AI to produce a set of explanations for specific data points.
  • Time Series Analysis: The solution has built-in date and time functions that allow users to drag-and-drop and drill down with a click to analyze time trends and execute comparisons over time like year-over-year growth or get insights based on days of the week.
  • Mobile App: Tableau Mobile supports many functionalities that the Desktop and Online versions have, including interactive dashboards, filters and drill down capabilities.


Some of the product limitations include:

  • Tableau Server does not support data encryption
  • Cannot restore individual customer workbooks or data lost due to events other than system failure
  • Only site administrators, not end-users, can enable or disable alerts
  • Provides predictive analytics but doesn’t allow users to customize the predictive analytics algorithm
  • Doesn’t offer column-level security policies
  • Does not provide multi-location support
  • Requires IT support for integrations and other high-end tasks. Users cannot do this using tutorials or self-help videos on their own

Suite Support

Access to Tableau’s standard support package is included in all subscriptions and is available for the duration of that subscription. If you’re looking for a little more, Tableau also offers extended and premium support programs that offer accelerated response times and options.

mail_outlineEmail: Only license support queries are processed through email and accessed through the customer portal. Users do not typically email Tableau directly, but submit a web form or customer portal request, as detailed below.
phonePhone:Live phone support is only offered to premium support package subscribers. Those subscribers can call support 24/7 for both priority 1 and priority 2 issues, as defined in Tableau’s technical support guidelines.
schoolTraining:Tableau offers a library of free training videos and on-demand and live webinars available to subscribers from their website. They cover everything from the very basics to advanced analytics manipulation. Users can also enroll in role-based learning paths through e-learning and live/classroom training courses to train both virtually and in-person.
local_offerTickets:To submit a service request, users can access either use the contact form or use the customer portal. To start a case, users should go to either the contact us page on Tableau’s website or the product support page from the customer portal. Users can input a keyword that describes the nature of their problem (for example, “how to join tables”). The query will search Tableau’s resource library and forums to see if the question has been answered elsewhere. If users don’t find an answer to the problem, they can move to the next step and select “continue to create a case.” In the description box, users should fill out the required information in as much detail as possible.

Cost of Ownership

License/Subscription Cost
  • Based on the number of users and user-licenses.
  • Subscription costs allow users to access Tableau over a set time-frame both on-premise and through the cloud.
Maintenance Cost
  • On-Premise: An additional cost over and above the upfront cost has to be paid for ongoing support and maintenance.
  • Cloud-based/SaaS: There is no maintenance and support cost for the Cloud/Web-based solution.
Installation/Implementation Cost
  • On-Premise: Typically charged over and above the license cost.
  • Cloud-based/SaaS: Included in the subscription cost.
Customization Cost

Custom version cannot be requested - rather users can do limited customizations on their own, such as:

  • User can change the server name that appears in the browser tab, tooltips, and messages
  • User can change the logos that appear in different server page contexts
  • User can control the language used for the server user interface and the locale used for views
  • Custom fonts can be installed for different clients
  • Administrators and project leaders can also add images to projects
Data Migration Cost/Change Management/Upfront Switching Cost
  • Data Migration is possible in Tableau Servers and can be done with the following tools: Tabcmd Script, REST API, TabMigrate and Enterprise Deployment Tool by InterWorks.
Recurring/Renewal Costs Renewal cost is equivalent to the fees paid annually based upon the number of users.

Tableau Reviews

Average customer reviews & user sentiment summary:

3927 reviews


of users would recommend this product

Synopsis of User Ratings and Reviews

Based on an aggregate of reviews taken from the sources above, the following pros & cons have been curated by a SelectHub Market Analyst.


  • User-Friendly: The platform is intuitive and easy to use, according to 92% of users who mention its user-friendliness.
  • Data Connectivity: About 82% of users who mention Tableau Desktop’s integrations and connectors express satisfaction with its ease in connecting to a wide variety of data sources and consolidating information in one place.
  • Data Visualization: Tableau excels at data storytelling, turning raw data into visually appealing, customizable graphs and charts, with over 96% of users who mention its data visualization capabilities praising its visualization options and interactive dashboards.
  • Self-Service BI: About 88% of users who mention Tableau Desktop’s filters and drill-down capabilities are happy with its self-service BI functionality allowing them to dig deeper for specific information.
  • Sharing Options: Tableau users cite the platform’s online publication and quick internal sharing capabilities as pros, with over 80% of users who mention sharing options and web accessibility expressing satisfaction.
  • Customer Service and Support: About 80% of users have positive opinions of Tableau’s customer support, noting quick response times from the support team and frequent updates to the platform that integrate user requests.


  • Speed: The platform struggles to process and refresh data, especially on complex visualizations, with over 90% of users who mention Tableau’s speed reporting issues with it loading slowly.
  • Price: While Tableau Desktop delivers a good value for bigger businesses and enterprises, over 80% of users who mention the platform’s cost note that it is expensive for personal use or that it has inflexible trial periods and pricing options.
  • Need for Training: About 40% of users note that while the basic functions of the platform are easy to use out-of-the-box either through the intuitive UI or with the aid of video tutorials, in order to maximize their use of the platform, there is a steep learning curve to learn the more complex features.

Researcher's Summary:

Tableau Desktop serves as a robust business intelligence solution that stands out from the crowd with its powerful data visualization capabilities, as many users would agree, noting its drag-and-drop functionality and customization options. Its intuitive interface makes data analysis and self-service BI accessible to users of all technical skill levels. However, some users note that available free resources focus on basic features and that learning how to use the more powerful functions can be difficult without training. Customer service rates highly with users who request support, and several users cite the vendor’s commitment to updating the platform regularly with new features as a plus. Other features that rate highly in recent user reviews include Tableau’s interactivity, such as filters and drill-down, as well as its sharing options. On the flip side, many users find that the platform loads or refreshes slowly, especially on start-up. Others express concern that the pricing structure for Tableau is cost-prohibitive, especially for individual or personal use, and that the free version of Tableau Public compromises data security. Overall, Tableau is a feature-rich BI solution that helps companies harness the power of visual analytics with relative ease of use, but may not suit all users’ needs.

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