What is ETL?

What is ETL?

In this tutorial, we will breakdown what ETL is, how it works, and how your organization can benefit from ETL. ETL stands for Extract, Transform and Load, which are the three steps of the ETL process. ETL collects and processes data from various sources into a single data store, making it much easier to analyze.

These days, companies have access to more data sources and formats than ever before: databases, websites, SaaS (software as a service) applications, and analytics tools, to name a few. Unfortunately, the ways businesses often store this data make it challenging to extract the valuable insights hidden within — especially when you need it for smarter data-driven business decision-making.

Standard reporting solutions such as Google Analytics and Mixpanel can help, but there comes a time when your data analysis needs to outgrow capacity. At this point, you might consider building a custom business intelligence (BI) solution, which will have the data integration layer as its foundation.

First emerging in the 1970s, ETL remains the most widely used method of enterprise data integration. But what is ETL exactly, and how does ETL work? In this article, we drill down to what it is and how your organization can benefit from it. 

What is ETL?

ETL stands for Extract, Transform and Load, which are the three steps of the ETL process. ETL collects and processes data from various sources into a single data store (e.g., a data warehouse or data lake), making it much easier to analyze.

In this section, we'll look at each piece of the extract, transform and load process more closely.

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