/ The benefits of using pre-built apps with your BI solution

The benefits of using pre-built apps with your BI solution

Business intelligence (BI) solutions are becoming more and more popular as organizations strive to make better use of their data. A key component of many BI solutions is the ability to create custom applications, or apps, that can be used to visualize and interact with data in new and innovative ways.

While it is certainly possible to create custom apps from scratch, many BI vendors offer pre-built apps that can be leveraged to jump-start your own projects.

Pre-built apps offer a number of benefits that companies and organizations can take advantage of quickly. However, knowing how to select the right app for your needs is critical to success.

How can these apps be beneficial to users? Let’s take a look in this deep dive on pre-built data apps.
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What is a data app?

A business intelligence (BI) app is a software application designed to help users interact with data in new and insightful ways. These apps can be used for a variety of purposes, including but not limited to:

  • Data visualization: graphical representations of data that can be used to spot trends and outliers
  • Data analysis: performing mathematical operations on data sets to glean new insights
  • Reporting: generating formatted reports based on data sets
  • Dashboarding: creating interactive dashboards that can be used to monitor KPIs in real-time

Many BI solutions will offer a marketplace or store where users can browse and select from a variety of pre-built apps. In some cases, these apps are free to use, while in others, they may come at a cost for using or downloading.

What are the benefits of using pre-built apps?

There are many reasons why you might want to consider using a pre-built app rather than building your own custom solution. Here are some of the key benefits:

Speed to insights

One of the main advantages of using a pre-built app is the speed to insights. With a well-designed app, you should be able to start interacting with data in minutes, rather than hours or days. This can be especially useful for time-sensitive tasks such as performance monitoring or emergency response.

Not only does this save you time in the short term, but it can also help you get started on your project sooner, allowing you to realize the benefits of your BI solution more quickly.

Reduced costs

Another major benefit of using pre-built apps is that they can help reduce costs. Building a custom app from scratch can be a time-consuming and expensive process, especially if you need to hire outside help.

Pre-built apps, on the other hand, are typically much less expensive and can be downloaded and installed quickly and easily. In some cases, they may even be free.

However, companies who may lack the in-house expertise to build their own apps should beware of pre-built apps that are not customizable. If the app does not fit your specific needs, you may find yourself locked into using it or spending additional time and money to make it work.

Time savings

In addition to the cost savings, using pre-built apps can also save you time. As mentioned earlier, these apps are designed to help you get started quickly and easily. With the right app, you should be able to perform many of the tasks required for data analysis and visualization without any training or extra effort.

This can be a major advantage for companies who need to get up and running quickly or who have limited resources to devote to training. It also allows you to focus your time and energy on more complex tasks, rather than on basic data handling and visualization.

Selection of apps

As with any other software application, the selection of pre-built BI apps is vast and can be overwhelming. With so many options to choose from, it can be difficult to know which app is right for your needs.

This is where a good BI vendor can be invaluable. They will have a deep understanding of the different apps available and will be able to help you select the right one for your specific project.

Need for speed: How data apps are fueling business successThey can also provide support and training on how to use the app effectively.


Key considerations to pre-built apps

While there are many benefits to using pre-built BI apps, there are a few important considerations to keep in mind.


A key consideration when using a pre-built app is whether it offers customization to fit the unique needs of your business. If the app does not have the features or functionality you need, you may be required to spend additional time and resources developing functionality.

Lack of expertise

If you are not familiar with the tools used to build BI apps, you may find yourself struggling to use pre-built apps effectively. In this case, you would need to rely on the expertise of your BI vendor or other experts to help you get the most out of the app.

Practical uses of pre-built apps

Now that we’ve looked at some of the benefits and drawbacks of using pre-built apps, let’s take a look at some practical examples of how they can be used.

Sales reporting

One common use case for pre-built apps is sales reporting. These apps can help sales teams track their performance, identify trends, and make better decisions.

There are a variety of different sales reporting apps available, each with its own set of features and capabilities. Sales reporting apps can be used to track data such as sales totals, conversion rates, and customer satisfaction.

They can also be used to generate reports, such as sales forecasts and pipeline reports. This data can be used to improve sales strategies and performance.
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Customer relationship management

Another common use for pre-built apps is customer relationship management (CRM). CRM apps are designed to help businesses manage their customer data, including contact information, sales history, and interaction data.

CRM apps can also be used to track customer engagement, such as email opens and clicks, webinar registrations, and support tickets. This data can be used to improve customer service and support.

Marketing analytics

Marketing analytics apps are another popular type of pre-built app. These apps are designed to help businesses track their marketing performance, including website traffic, social media engagement, and conversion rates.

Marketing analytics apps can also be used to generate reports, such as marketing ROI and campaign performance. This data can be used to improve marketing strategies and performance.

When you can analyze your marketing data, you can make better decisions about where to allocate your resources. This can lead to more effective marketing campaigns and a higher return on investment.

Reporting and analytics

Reporting and analytics apps are another common type of pre-built app. These apps are designed to help businesses generate reports and analytics, such as sales reports, marketing reports, and financial reports.

Reporting and analytics apps can also be used to track data, such as website traffic, social media engagement, and conversion rates. This data can be used to improve business performance.

Tips for picking the right pre-built app

When choosing a pre-built app, it’s important to consider your needs and preferences. Here are a few tips for picking the right app:

1. Do your research

Before you decide on an app, make sure you do your research. Compare different apps and read reviews to find the one that best meets your needs.

2. Consider your budget

Pre-built apps can vary widely in price, so be sure to consider your budget when making your choice. Some apps are free, while others can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

3. Get input from other users

If you’re not sure which app to choose, get input from other users. Ask your friends, colleagues, or other business owners which apps they use and why. This can help you narrow down your options and make a more informed decision.

4. Test the app before you buy

If possible, test the app before you purchase it. This will give you a chance to see if it meets your needs and preferences.

5. Check the requirements

Make sure you check the requirements for the app before you buy it. Some apps require specific software or hardware, while others may only work with certain operating systems.


Pre-built apps can be a great way to jump-start your business intelligence projects. They can save you time and money, and they can provide you with valuable insights into your business.

However, not all pre-built apps are created equal. Be sure to do your research and choose an app that meets your specific needs. And don’t forget to test the app before you purchase it—this will help ensure that it’s the right fit for your business.

When you can find the right pre-built app, you’ll be well on your way to success.

Check out some related resources:

There’s an App for that—Tips for Crafting Apps, Dashboards, and other Engaging Data Experiences

Domo Showcases ESG Solution for Gartner BI Analytics Showdown

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