Tableau vs Power BI: Which Dashboard Tool Is Better for Marketing Teams?

In the past few years, we have seen the growth, spread, and dominance of data. It has crept through the cracks of our houses and now feeds the process of huge organizations.   

According to Wikipedia, “Data are characteristics or information, usually numerical, that are collected through observation.”  

In the digital world, the data has been divided, classified, and processed to make it simpler to utilize. Businesses organizations utilize all sorts of data to analyze for making razor-sharp strategic decisions. 

However, business organizations cannot process and analyze the massive amount of data using traditional methods. Hence, they utilize business intelligence software.  

What is a Business Intelligence Software?  

Business Intelligence Software is an application that is designed to process, analyze, and report business intelligence data. These applications work by helping them to collect, enrich, visualize, and store data.  

It is a must-have tool and is available in the toolkit of a most successful organization.   

Here are some statistics that accurately represent the importance of business intelligence software and how it is growing across the world:  

  • The market size for business intelligence and analytics software applications is forecast to reach 16.5 billion in the next year. Source: Statista  
  • The business intelligence software segment is expected to show a revenue growth of 15.3% in the last year. Source: Statista  
  • Reporting, dashboards, data integration, data warehousing, and data preparation were top technology strategic initiatives to BI in the last year. Source: Dresner Advisory Associates  
  • The greater the uncertainty in an industry, the more likely their executive and C-suite leaders are using BI to search for greater stability. Source: Dresner Advisory Associates  
  • BI tools have been more commonly used by R&D, Business Intelligence Competency Centers (BICC), Marketing & Sales, and IT in the last year. Source: Dresner Advisory Associates  

In this blog post, we will be comparing two powerful BI dashboards Tableau and Power BI. So, you can find out which dashboard tool works best for your marketing teams.  


Tableau is an interactive data visualization tool for people working with versatile data. System Tableau was launched in 2003 is by Tableau Software based in the U.S. Later, it was acquired by Salesforce in 2019. 

The tool can help you condensed the original data into a graphical format that is simple to grasp and easy to analyze. Hence, the tool makes the data generated with Tableau comprehensive for technicians of different levels.  

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For anyone to create a custom dashboard, they don’t need to acquire any high-tech skills in Tableau.  

In the 2020 Magic Quadrant for Analytics and Business Intelligence platforms, for the 8th consecutive year, Gartner listed Tableau as a leader.  

Top Companies Using Tableau 

Apple, Lenovo, Cisco Systems, LinkedIn, GoDaddy, Seagate, Wells Fargo, JP Morgan Chase, Verizon, Honeywell, Lufthansa, Walmart, Deloitte, and Nissan.  

On the other hand, Power BI Microsoft is a business analytics service tool by Microsoft developed in 2013. It aims to provide interactive visualizations, immersive data, and business intelligence capabilities.  

The tool comes with a simple enough interface where end-users can easily create their reports and dashboards without any outside help. 

Top companies using Power BI Microsoft

Metro Bank, Conde Nast, Aston Martin, Rolls Royce, Heathrow, Hewlett Packard, Adobe, Kraft Heinz, GE Healthcare, and Rockwell Automation. 

Data Visualization 

To avoid lengthy and complex documents, data visualization uses graphs, maps, and diagrams. By presenting users with diagrams, data visualization makes the big data much easier to grasp for the end-user. 

Tableau is the next name for data visualizations for some as it offers a more streamlined and tidy approach. Here users can create reports in the form of worksheets or dashboards.  

Besides, Tableau is used best for the representation of larger data sets from various sources and its drill-down functionality.  

Power BI allows users with multiple drags and drops elements via a sidebar. It offers users a simple option to import crucial data from various sources with a few clicks.   

It has real-time data access which means it can react instantly to business changes and feed to Power BI from the CRM, project management, sales, and financial tools.  

Lastly, it also offers a software development kit that helps convert data from multiple sources to interactive dashboards.  



1. Powerful and Flexible Visualization  

People love Tableau because it constantly enhances and adds to its sophisticated feature set. It helps uses build specific and customized things to execute your vision.   

2. Streamlined Data  

There are many ways that Tableau can help users streamlines data-related tasks. For example, some have found it easier to create level of detail (LOD) expressions or combine multiple datasets with blends in Tableau. Also, Tableau’s parameters are more flexible than Power BI’s.  

3. User-Base and Market Presence  

Tableau has been in the marketplace about 10 years longer than Power BI. Hence, the tools have become it’s developed a large and loyal following among viz data-specialists, data-analysts, and others spending a lot of time marketing.   

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This massive user base can become pretty handy for someone with Tableau-specific skills or else users need to ask the community questions.

Microsoft’s Power BI

1. Seamless Integration

Power BI enjoys widespread adoption as a part of its larger Microsoft family of products. However, it works well alongside Excel and other Microsoft applications. This can be extremely helpful for marketing departments of companies that are using Microsoft for most of their processes.  

2. Impressive Visuals and User-friendliness  

Power BI is an effective and user-friendly tool for creating reports and dashboards through visualizations. Gartner notes: an upgrade in 2019 greatly expanded the cloud-based version’s capabilities, especially when it comes to AI and machine learning. Power BI is constantly improving its offering, releasing monthly enhancements.   

Power BI provides a better and greater ability to customize visualizations than Tableau. Most users have praised Power BI to quickly help them create graphs and charts as it’s a huge plus for time-strapped marketing teams. 

3. Easy-to-use Data Modeling  

Power BI’s Query gives its users the power to quickly add additional modeling to its existing dataset. They can easily add new columns, rename or format columns, and merge or append datasets based on simple logic. 

Even though Tableau offers similar abilities it is available in a limited capacity and to achieve more robust functions, uses will need Tableau Prep, a secondary application.  

Bottom line: Power BI vs. Tableau   

The two platforms have matched in most ways and capabilities. In the end, they come down to Power BI’s scale vs. Tableau’s specialization.  

However, you need to remember the best is the one which fulfills your needs more. For instance, you need to think of question such as:  

  • Is a budget an overriding concern?
  • Does your organization rely primarily on Microsoft products?  
  • Will most reports will be created by dedicated team members who are doing more advanced forms of visualization?   
  • Where you want your analytics program three years down the line?   

Businesses will face multiple problems and challenges when working with the software. So, choose between the tool that empowers business over the long term.  

Johnny Thompson

Johnny Thompson is a senior reporter for Generator Research in Los Angeles, reporting on technology, business, finances, and more. He previously worked as a reporter for the Wall Street Journal and got his start at newspapers in New York, Connecticut, and Massachusetts.

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