A "goldmine of data"—out of reach
Release the hidden diamonds. Guide the monkey through the jungle. Search for the good guys in the forest.
These are just some of the escapades enjoyed by players of the Spil Games portfolio of mobile games. However, those adventures also mirror how difficult it was for the company to get answers to its data before Tableau was introduced.
Spil Games, headquartered in the Netherlands, publishes and distributes games to more than 100 million monthly users. And games like Troll Face Quest, My Dolphin Show and Uphill Rush are drawing in ever-more audiences, especially from mobile gaming applications.
For Derek Willemsen, Manager of Reporting and Analytics at Spil Games, this success creates massive volumes of data. And the problem was what to do with it.
“We had a goldmine of data, but we weren’t using it,” he explains. “When I joined the company, we were relying on various different platforms to analyse and report on our data, including Google Analytics and spreadsheets. As a result, we had a multitude of different dashboards which complicated and delayed decision-making. Our goal was to build dashboards based on multiple data sources quickly and easily. That would help drive data-driven decisions on a daily basis.”
It was time to invest more in business intelligence (BI). The data they wanted to learn more about included everything from game loading times and search engine advertising optimization, to user demographics. At the time, Spil Games already had a BI tool in place for dashboards, but when you consider it took 44 clicks simply to update one dashboard, it was clear things needed to change.
The first step was to deploy an HP Vertica enterprise data warehouse (EDW) as a data source for reporting. The main reporting table in this 35 terabytes EDW, which contains aggregated data on multiple levels, currently has currently approximately 900 million rows. The single largest table contains up to 25 billion rows of raw clickstream data. More than 100 data sources are integrated with the EDW.
Tableau drives data-driven decisions every day
The final piece in the jigsaw was to make data analysis faster, easier and self-service. Which is where Tableau comes in.
“We did some market research, tested a few tools and chose Tableau as our partner,” says Willemsen. “It was by far and away the right choice. Tableau enables everyone in the company to visualize the data, gain insight and get answers to their data questions.”