Last month, Salesforce announced a new integration with Snowflake, enabling the sharing of data between the CRM and data warehouse. With a catalog of over 4,000 existing Salesforce integrations, why does this one feel different, and what does this mean for the rest of B2B SaaS and their customers?
The data warehouse as the source of truth
Today's B2B SaaS tools are really good at solving specific problems across many functions and scales of a business. But every new piece of software that a company procures is another place data is generated and stored. If a growing company wants to analyze and make sense of all this data to understand their business as a whole, the company will often undertake the task of collecting all of this data and assembling a “single source of truth”.
For modern companies, that single source of truth is most often the data warehouse – Snowflake, BigQuery, Redshift, Databricks, and a tail of up-and-comers: mission control for the business. If you’re building B2B SaaS and your customers are asking questions like:
· "How can I get this in Looker?"
· "What's the easiest way to export this data?"
· “How can I get this data into my data warehouse?”
Congratulations! Your customers believe your software is generating data important enough that they want it fed directly into their single source of truth, where they can query it, analyze it alongside the rest of their business data, or visualize it in Tableau or Looker.
Customers spend a lot of time and money assembling this data
Companies and their data teams go through a lot to build that source of truth. A popular strategy is to hire a team of data engineers to "scrape" the APIs from each SaaS tool and copy the data to the data warehouse, but this task is never-ending and the solution is brittle and error prone. For example, Salesforce has around 100 pages of documentation on their Change Data Capture API to help companies export their Salesforce data. (Note: data engineers perform higher value-add tasks too, this is just one part of the job.)
A delightful (and profitable) customer experience
If so many SaaS customers are going out of their way to manually extend the product in the same exact way, it would make sense for SaaS companies to consider building that feature natively. In the case of data, this means enabling customers to export their data to their data warehouse (that “single source of truth” we discussed above) without having to scrape APIs. Salesforce’s Snowflake connector is a recognition that a feature this valuable can move the needle on incremental deals and meaningfully expand even the largest accounts.
What does this mean for B2B SaaS?
Product teams across B2B SaaS should be acutely aware that the data in their product is critical to their customers. Product managers focused on data or API products are likely already hearing this request from their most active customers. “Salesforce, Stripe, and Segment connect to my data warehouse -- can you do that too?”
Salesforce won’t be the last major SaaS company to launch their flashy integration with a data warehouse. It’s safe to expect a wave of B2B SaaS companies catering to growth and enterprise customers will start offering data warehouse integration capabilities over the coming years. And the ones that do will likely land more enterprise deals, successfully upsell their existing customers, and of course, delight their customers with a truly great data experience.
How does Prequel fit in?
We’re excited about Salesforce’s announcement, because we know how much better SaaS tools can be when they prioritize a great data experience. At Prequel, we make it effortless to launch a data warehouse export feature (like the one Salesforce just launched) in a matter of hours. If building native connections to Snowflake, BigQuery, Redshift, Databricks, S3, or any other data destinations is on your roadmap, we’d love to chat.