If you’re considering to use Google Data Studio, it’s natural to ask yourself about its pricing. Or if there are any hidden costs or limits.
These are also the most common questions we get asked by our clients who just get started with GDS. So in this post will try to clarify these and other common questions related to Data Studio pricing and limits.
Google Data Studio pricing
I’m happy to tell you that at the moment, Google Data Studio is free for all users. Google does not charge anything for using the tool, so no matter your business size, the service is completely free.
You might be tempted to think that since it’s a free service, GDS must be of a lower quality than the paid solutions. However, from my experience, I can tell you that the opposite is true.
With their ever-increasing list of data connectors, intuitive UI, advanced data visualization and transformation features, GDS greatly surpasses the paid tools from its category.
All of this while being free of charge for its users. That’s why the majority of our clients use it as their unified source-of-truth for their various data sources.
Data Studio usage cost
GDS does not have any hidden costs, however, there are additional costs involved when using third-party data connectors.
While native connectors like Google Analytics or Google Sheets are free, you’ll have to use a paid connector to get data from platforms like Facebook or Linkedin.
At the moment, this is the only cost involved in using Data Studio.
As of October 2020, there are 18 free connectors built by Google and 279 third-party, mostly paid connectors.
The price for paid connectors varies a lot from vendor to vendor but usually is within the $29 to $299 range. With them, you’ll be able to get data from non-Google services such as Facebook, Adobe Analytics, Twitter, Bing Ads, etc.
The free connectors allow you to get data from sources like Google Analytics, Google Ads, Youtube Analytics, external MySql, PostgreSQL databases, etc.
The full list of connectors is available here.
Data Studio Limits
Just like any other tool, Google Data Studio also has limits. And based on these limits, one can decide if the tool is suitable for them or not.
Luckily, most of the limitations are related to data size and not to visualization or transformation capabilities. Because of this, GDS is mostly suitable for medium-sized data analysis projects and unsuitable for large data projects.
By medium-sized projects, I mean analysis which involves data sets with up to 2M rows. For comparison, Excel has a 1M row limit per workbook.
So if you can analyze your data in Excel, it will also be possible to visualize it in Data Studio.
Now about the actual limits.
For the processed rows, the limits vary from connector to connector but is usually within the 1M to 2M range. There are ways to expand this limit to 2B rows, but for most businesses, the default limit is more than enough.
For CSV file uploads, the files cannot be larger than 100MB and a user cannot use more than 2GB of total storage. Users are also limited to 100 uploads per data set per day when uploading CSV files.
For cases when you want to export data from a chart, there is a limit of 750,000 rows of data that can be exported.
As for report pages, at the moment, you can add up to 50 elements (charts, tables, controls) on a page.
If you will exceed this limit, you’ll get an error saying “Too many charts. Sorry, this will create too many components for the page. Try selecting fewer charts or controls”.
However, one should not worry about this limit as a well-designed report should never reach that many elements per page.
Having that many elements on a single page makes the report harder to read and is a sign of poor design.
Another limit that GDS has is the number of recipients a scheduled email report can have. At the moment, you can schedule your report for automatic email delivery for up to 50 recipients.
If you try to add more than 50 recipients in the email delivery form, the Schedule button will gray out and you won’t be able to click it.
Google Data Studio is a free dashboarding solution that allows anyone to perform advanced data analysis and visualization work.
It might not be suitable for large-scale data projects, but for business use, it’s the best solution.
It is free, provides an ever-increasing list of connectors, features and capabilities, and has a large community always there to help.
Because of this, it’s the best solution from its league, even better than the paid tools.