Reporting tools are essential in the company with the increasing demand for data and reporting. I listed the 25 best reporting tools you can’t miss in 2023, from free and open-source, to commercial and enterprise-scale, which covers professional enterprise reporting software, BI suite with reporting capabilities, marketing reporting platforms, financial reporting systems, and sales reporting tools.

I highlighted these solutions’ benefits, disadvantages, prices, and suitable users in this reporting tools list. In the end, you can review the comparison of these reporting tools. Also, I summarized a guideline for you to choose the right reporting software.

Welcome to take full advantage of them! The list is quite long and you can use the table of contents for a quick review.

1. An In-depth Review of These Best Reporting Tools

1.1 Professional Enterprise Reporting Software


reporting tools list
Reporting Tool: FineReport

FineReport is a reporting tool developed by 100% Java, designed for enterprises to deal with the demands for various, frequent, and complex reports. The basic features such as broad database support, scheduling reports, multiple exporting formats, and security guarantees satisfy the business needs. The low-code and excel-like designer is user-friendly for non-technical users.

Compared to other reporting tools, the stunning feature you can’t miss is data entry supports writing data back to the database via online forms. In this way, it is time-saving to collect fresh data around different branches or departments.

On top of that, as an enterprise-scale reporting software, FineReport provides rich APIs for customizing and integrating with other applications. Therefore, it is flexible to seamlessly integrate with third parties such as CRM, OA, ERP, etc.

Plus, the data visualization package offers a wide variety of visualization options such as 3D charts, maps, GIS relationships, and dashboards.

Highlights: easy-to-use, query reports, convenient data entry, rich APIs, mobile and dashboard display

Price: For personal use, FineReport is free without time and features limit. For enterprises, it offers a quote-based plan that charges according to different situations. In a word, FineReport is price-friendly to all customers.

Best for: IT departments and report developers with flexible and professional reporting needs.

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oepn source reporting tool
Reporting Tool: JasperReports

JasperReports Library is an open-source and Java-based reporting tool

It can be embedded into any Java application because this reporting engine is written entirely in Java. 

You can run JasperReports standalone or plug it into your app’s classpath to make it become part of the hosting application. 

JasperReports shines on sharability, which supports ten file exporting formats, including PDF, Excel, and HTML for fully interactive web content. 

Besides, it supports printing and automatically reporting through email.

However, as open-source software, the learning cost is high for non-technical users, and some features are not very intuitive. The flexibility is another disadvantage, it just can only be embedded into Java applications, and the integration costs lots of work. 

Highlights: customizable open-source architecture, runs anywhere

Price: The product is free, while the help documentation is commercial.  

Best for: Java developers who want to add reporting capabilities to their applications. 


embedded analytics reporting system
Reporting Tool: Izenda

Izenda is an embedded analytics reporting system designed to deliver self-service to end-users and report creation directly within applications or portals. 

Users can build charts and grids, add filters, and include drill-downs from inside their applications. It is easy to create ad-hoc reports, dashboards, and data visualizations on its drag-and-drop interface. 

Additionally, thanks to its 3-tier embedded architecture with an open-source front end, Izenda supports seamless integration with Ruby, Python, Java, .NET, PHP, and other applications. 

The only limitation is that advanced reports and dashboards require a strong background in SQL. 

Highlights: Ad-hoc reporting, embedded analytics, self-service reporting tool

Price: start from $12000.00/year

Best for: IT departments who are looking for an embedded reporting solution

Crystal Reports 

reporting software
Reporting Tool: Crystal Report

SAP Crystal Reports is an on-premise reporting tool for SQL. It is perfect in its pixel reporting capabilities. The system is fully featured and allows a great deal of flexibility in customizing reports.

The software supports hundreds of source connections that you can build reports from everywhere – big data, Excel, XML, data from Salesforce, etc.

Crystal Reports should be on your list if you have international branches that will require reporting in languages other than English because it supports delivering the output in over a dozen formats, in 28 languages.

However, it requires a proprietary language and technical know-how to build attractive reports. And the reviews indicate that it might often crash after a software update. 

Highlights: pixel reporting, support 28 languages 

Price: $495.00/one-time/user, no free version but a free trial 

Best for: small to medium-sized business reporting needs

a SaaS platform for building reports and dashboards Reporting software:
Reporting Tool: provides a SaaS platform for building reports and dashboards in your own software application or customer portal.

It is a good option for SaaS companies & enterprises who value data-driven insights but don’t want to waste time developing a dashboard component from scratch. 

The ease of use and the very small learning curve made it possible for non-tech users to jump right into visualizing the data.

Additionally, as a SaaS reporting system, offers connectors to data in the cloud like Google Drive and applications like Google Analytics, Mailchimp, Salesforce, and Teamleader.  However, the visual features could be improved.

Highlights: ease of use, fully integrate, support cloud data connection

Price: starts at $275/month

Best for: companies that have a SaaS platform

1.2 BI Suite with Reporting Capabilities 


BI tool, with shining reporting and visualization capabilities Reporting software: Tableau
Reporting Tool: Tableau

Tableau is the most popular BI tool with visualization capabilities and shining reporting. 

It offers a powerful visualization engine and an easy-to-use interface to quickly turn data into impressive charts, reports, and dashboards. Additionally, the software provides hundreds of visualization customization options and interaction techniques at users’ disposal.

On top of that, Tableau has a thriving community and forum where you can find numerous videos, guides, and tips.

The only advantage is the cost is high, and the flexibility is so low that it is difficult to customize or embed into companies’ IT landscape.

Highlights: ease of use, competitive visualization effects, unrivalled community

Price: Quote based 

Best for: business analysts with analytics needs 


data reporting platform
Reporting Tool: Yellowfin

Yellowfin is an innovative BI and data reporting platform that combines visualization, machine learning, and collaboration. It is stunning in its storytelling capabilities, which help readers drill into the details and get behind the numbers to make a decision. 

Yellowfin Signals helps discover and sends automatic alerts about critical signal changes in the business via automated AI-driven techniques. 

As a reporting tool, the Yellowfin Story and Present feature supports building management and financial reports and presentations conveniently with a single source.

However, the limitations are it does not support integrating with various platforms like Quickbooks, and SAP. The only available language is English. 

Highlights: action-based dashboardsautomated business monitoring, data-rich presentations, and interactive reports.

Price: Quote based

Best for: enterprises with analytics needs


self-service reporting tool
Reporting Tool: board

BOARD is a self-service reporting tool that combines the BI tools and the reporting capabilities in a single system. 

This software’s key idea is all-in-one which offers a unified architecture for BI, reporting, analytics, and performance management. The “ALL IN ONE” design allows you to don’t need another tool to make your CPM environment.

BOARD provides a wide variety of data import options, and its capability to “slice and dice” data, and analyze different datasets is powerful. 

Additionally, you can get back reports through spoken language thanks to the NLR/NLG technologies. 

The disadvantages are the limited performance of the Excel add-in may cause some crashes, and it only can be installed on Mac.

Highlights: “All-in-one” design includes performance management 

Price: Quote based 

Best for: small-to-midsize organizations with analytics needs

Zoho Analytics

reporting tool based on web
Reporting Tool: Zoho

Zoho Analytics is a SaaS business intelligence software with one of the most powerful reporting modules. The former is Zoho Reports.

The software is best for the non-tech savvy. It’s incredibly easy to generate reports from any data on its intuitive interface.

Zoho Analytics offers AI, ML, and NLP technologies for augmented analytics, called Zia, allowing users to extract data just by entering a simple question.

Additionally, it supports 500+ out-of-the-box integrations for your business apps, including popular marketing, financial, and e-commerce analytics apps. The data can be imported from databases even behind firewalls.

The cons are the limitation on the number of email addresses while scheduling reports is restricted, and the updates are not well documented. 

Highlights: 500+business applications integration, easy-to-use, augmented analytics

Price: $22-$445/monthly depending on the users and data amount, 15 days free trial.

Best for: CXOs, sales managers, analysts, consultants 


a big data reporting software solution
Reporting Tool: Sisense

If you are searching for a big data reporting solution that uses machine learning and has automation features, Sisense will be a good choice. 

Sisense is an agile business analytics platform that provides end-to-end reporting solutions. It equips end-users with the insights they need via real-time reports.

On that note, the in-chip architecture of Sisense accelerates the time it takes in data ingestion, cleaning, and report generation. It offers Visual ETL and UI for data relationships and modelling with ETL. 

You can install Sisense in a private cloud, on-premises, or choose a hybrid deployment using Windows or Linux. The deployment process is fast and straightforward.

However, reviews indicate that there are some unknown issues with widgets, dashboards, and filters. Besides, Cube’s management logic is growing old. It needs a revamp, more languages supported, and a more advanced fault-tolerant incremental build mechanism.

Highlights: in-chip architecturehybrid-cloud platform, easy deployment

Price: Quote-based

Best for: CXOs, sales managers, analysts, consultants

1.3 Reporting Platforms Specialize in Marketing Reporting

Google Analytics

one of the most robust web-based reporting tools designed to track users' behavior in digital marketing
Reporting Tool: Google Analytics

Google Analytics is one of the most robust web-based reporting tools designed to track users’ behaviour in digital marketing

The entry-level version is free, but it is powerful enough to monitor campaign performance, such as traffic acquisitions, referrals, and user interactions. Therefore, you can adjust your content or channel strategy timely according to the real-time data. 

It’s straightforward to deploy as long as you have backend access to your website. And the interface is user-friendly enough for any non-tech users to maximize the value of this platform. 

Besides, you can export the traffic reports into Excel, PDF, and Google Sheets. Or set a scheduled email to share the reports with your team or clients. 

On top of that, the Analytics Intelligence feature informs you of insights you might ignore. For example, when your web page takes significantly longer to load, Google Analytics will alert you to let you improve your website. 

Highlights: free, analytics intelligence feature

Price: the basic version is free

Best for: marketing team to track users’ behaviours and customers’ interactions with websites 

Agency Analytics

a marketing campaign focused report generator
Reporting Tool: Agency Analytics

Agency Analytics is a marketing campaign-focused report generator for different types of reports and dashboards for SEO auditing and monitoring campaigns. It emphasizes helping digital marketing agencies build automated reports for clients.

Because AgencyAnalytics offers more than 50 marketing platforms integration. You can put multiple campaigns from various channels in the same place to get the whole picture. 

Besides, your marketing team can take advantage of its SEO tracking features like rank tracking, site audits, and backlinks to develop SEO reports.

Last but not least, Agency Analytics’ system supports uploading your logo, applying your brand’s colour scheme, and using your domain. It is user-friendly to generate customer-facing reports. 

However, you can’t see the competitors’ backlinks in the backlink section.

Highlights: auto reporting100% brandable, 50+ marketing integrations

Price: $49-$399/monthly, 14 days free trial 

Best for: marketing agencies or departments with marketing campaign needs


Reporting software: Tapreports, It puts an emphasis on reporting tasks
Reporting Tool: Tapreports

TapClicks offers a set of marketing data solutions that streamline and automate the marketing process. TapReports is a part of the TapClicks suite that emphasizes reporting tasks, which allows agencies to manage communication with their clients and generate customizable marketing reports for their clients.

TapReports provides more than 100 data connectors to pull in data quickly without a support team or IT pro, offering users aggregated marketing data and omnichannel visual reports in a short time. 

Besides, TapReports offers an online working space for multiple users to collaborate and work on campaigns together. Clients or the marketing team can add input and share feedback simultaneously, helping with a campaign organization. 

If you want to leverage report generation tools for automatic digital marketing reporting, TapReports will be a good choice.

Highlights: convenient collaboration, automated reporting, a large library of data connectors

Price: Available upon request

Best for: marketing agencies creating branded reports from omnichannel for clients’ campaign 


a cloud-based reporting tool designed for digital marketers
Reporting Tool: Supermetrics

Supermetrics is a cloud-based reporting tool designed for digital marketers who work with marketing data to deal with PPC, SEO, social, and web analytics.

You can compare traffic, conversion rate, and CPC across your campaigns on a single dashboard with cross-platform reporting modules.

Automation is the most impressive Supermetrics feature. It continually scrubs each connected marketing platform you have to pull real-time data. You can email your reports weekly, monthly, or quarterly based on your needs.

Therefore, you don’t have to check the platform. The only you need to do is schedule reports to be collected, curated, and sent straight to your inbox.

The lack of storage and scalability are Supermetrics’ weaknesses. 

Highlights: very speedy, the cost of entry is relatively low, automated marketing reports.

Price: depends on the modules you choose, provides a 14-day free trial.

Best for: smaller teams that are just getting started with marketing analytics


a more data-visualization focused reporting system
Reporting Tool: DashThis

DashThis is a more data-visualization-focused reporting system compared to other marketing reporting software. In addition to custom URLs and an entirely customized white-label dashboard, this software offers nine widget chart types and advanced widget editing to generate appealing dashboards and reports that look like you made it yourself.

You can also leverage the 50+ preset dashboard templates to speed up your reporting. Just choose a template, select your periods (monthly reports, quarterly reports, etc.), plug in your data, and you’re good to go! 

Like other competitors, DashThis supports a ton of platform integration, including Instagram, Ahrefs, Moz, etc. 

Highlights: visually appealing, highly customizable dashboards, 50+ preset report templates

Price: $33-$499/month, depending on the number of dashboards.

Best for: marketing agencies or departments who need to create custom marketing reports

1.4 Reporting Platforms Specialize in Financial Reporting

Host Analytics

a cloud financial planning and analysis system and reporting tool designed for budgeting, planning, reporting, forecasting, and more.
Reporting Tool: Host Analytics

Host Analytics is a cloud financial planning and analysis system designed for budgeting, planning, reporting, forecasting, and more.

In terms of reporting, Host Analytics offers advanced formatting capabilities to support the production of presentation-quality financial and management reports

Besides, the ad-hoc analysis in Host Analytics is flexible; you can point-and-click to drill into the data to find in-depth insights. 

The reports are accessible anywhere once the reports are created in Excel. 

Don’t worry about data security. By relying on the Planful platform, the software ensures data security, data integrity, and a full audit trail.

The pro is Modeling and PCR needs to be in touch to ensure accurate, up-to-date reporting.

Highlights: flexible ad-hoc analysis, ensuring data security 

Price: Available upon request 

Best for: companies have a demand for finance-automated processes


 finance-owned solutions that include a reporting software
Reporting Tool: insightsoftware

Insightsoftware provides finance-owned solutions that include a reporting tool to accelerate time-critical processes to find and fix issues fast with flexible, real-time, drill-able reporting.

 It also allows you to drag and drop the data you want to analyze and create sophisticated business intelligence dashboards directly in Excel with minimal effort.

Instead of spending several hours copying and pasting financial data into Excel, insightsoftware directly integrates into your backend ERP and EPM software systems. In this way, it is easy to use and implement the out-of-the-box financial reporting software solutions, you can get fast access to accurate data in hours.

It also allows you to filter on many more fields and drag additional fields onto the report to answer common questions, such as revenue trends, vendor spending, Capex spending, daily cash flow tracking, weekly forecasting, etc. 

Highlights: interactive ad hoc visualizations, KPI dashboards, executive storyboards.

Price: quote based

Best for: need help creating financial reports from Excel

Prophix Software

Reporting Tool: Prophix
Reporting Tool: Prophix

When you start to involve more company members in reporting processes, you need the right tools to capture powerful insights behind the numbers. 

Prophix is a financial management system used for financial consolidation, budgeting, analysis, planning, and management reporting. It can be deployed both in the cloud and on-premises.

Prohix’s performance reporting tools enable you to boost productivity and collaboration, facilitate efficiencies, and incite decision-making.

The solution provides a spreadsheet-style interface that helps users to analyze financial data and organize information. 

Compared to other financial reporting tools, Prohix Software is more collaboration-oriented. You can supplement your reports with cell comments, line item details, and row notes to add the crucial information needed for business success.

Highlights: support documentation and commentary on data, drill-down reports

Price: Available upon request, provide a free trial 

Best for: companies need to automate and integrate their budgeting, forecasting, reporting, and planning.


Reporting software: Quickbooks
Reporting Tool: Quickbooks

Quickbooks is an accounting and reports writing software that helps small to large enterprises manage expenses, projects, invoices, reports, and more.

In terms of reporting, Quickbooks provides 200+ built-in templates for customizing, where you can apply filters, add or move data points, or add custom fields to save your time in writing financial reports, including balance sheets, cash flow, and profit and loss statements.

Highlights: 650+ integrations, Good tax support, advanced invoicing features

Price: Start from $25 per month

Best for: small businesses seeking accounting software suitable to their size.

Sage Intacct

 a cloud-based financial management and accounting software that allows for flexible and real-time reporting and analysis.
Reporting Tool: Sage Intacct

Sage Intacct is a cloud-based software for financial management and accounting reporting that offers flexible analysis and real-time reporting tools.

Sage Intacct’s financial reports allow you to quickly slice-and-dice the details that matter to all key stakeholders, including investors, executives, sales, finance, and other departments. 

And when questions arise, you can dive deeper with custom reports, dashboards, or visualizations to find the answers for confident decision-making.

Besides, Sage Intacct’s innovative general ledger covers ten dimensions to capture the business context of your transactions, operational measures, and budgets. In this way, you can quickly access or create reports that analyze real-time business performance by business drivers – without managing a complex account chart.

Highlights: general ledger, native cloud technology, real-time visibility, and insights

Price: available upon request

Best for: companies need to automate and integrate their budgeting, forecasting, reporting, and planning.

1.5 Reporting Platforms Specialize in Sales Reporting


sales reporting tool
Reporting Tool: Aviso

Aviso is an integrated sales management platform that is known for its AI capability. It provides a user-friendly interface for you to manage all your pipelines.

By combining technologies like cloud, machine learning, and data science, Aviso benefits leaders, managers, and salespeople and offers actionable advice and forecasting.

Aviso’s reporting will highlight the underlying patterns of the sales trend, funnel, and profit and loss. The operation team can better understand the customer relationship intelligence to manage the customer base. The sales manager can track the activities of each sales representative in a more timely manner.

Highlights: Pipeline Management, data prediction powered by AI tech

Price: $40 Per user per month, or quote-based for the enterprise.

Best for: sales organizations who are interested in AI-powered solution

Datahug (SAP Sales Cloud)

sales reporting tool
Reporting Tool: Datahug

More precisely, Datahug is a sales CRM with reporting functions. By automating various manual processes, datahug integrates lots of sales activities. It can effectively help improve productivity by gleaning and analyzing information.

For example, Gmail can be used as a report component of the software. Datahug collects data such as open email rates to help the team find potentially interested audiences. For sales managers, it provides a comprehensive view of sales performance and the performance of each salesperson.

Highlights: Lead management, email marketing

Price: start from $50/month

Best for: sales teams who want to integrate activities on one platform


sales reporting tool
Reporting Tool: 6sense

6sense provides predictive intelligence to accurately forecast your customers’ purchasing behaviour in a specific context. It is very helpful for B2B organizations to improve revenue growth predictability based on AI and machine learning. Users can easily get intuitive and solid insight from the platform, and users can also directly make reports from it.

Highlights: Account-Based Marketing (ABM) Software

Price: Available upon request

Best for: Large and mid-sized companies

HubSpot Sales Hub

Reporting software: HubSpot Sales Hub
Reporting Tool: HubSpot Sales Hub

Sales Hub is built on the HubSpot CRM platform designed for sales reporting and analytics. It helps organize the database, and it is also a robust sales reporting tool to analyze data on the platform and deliver critical information on leads, deals, and customers.

Highlights: expansive ecosystem

Price: start from $50/month

Best for: B2B sales


sales analytics and reporting software
Reporting Tool: Insightsquared

InsightSquared is a solution for sales analytics and reporting. The platform extracts data in real time and can create informative visualizations for sales representatives, sales managers, and executives. It can help companies manage their pipelines, increase conversion rates, accurately predict and identify areas that need follow-up. With these insights, the company can work in the right direction to increase customer acquisition and generate more revenue.

Highlights: Dashboards, sales reporting, and analytics

Price: Available upon request

Best for Companies who hope to automate sales reporting

2. Comparison of the Best Reporting Tools in 2023

Is this reporting tools list helpful to you? To help you better compare this reporting software, choose the best reporting software for you. I made a table for you!

TypeBrandBest ForPrice
Reporting ToolFineReportIT departments and report developers with flexible and professional reporting needs, across varying industries and scaling sizes.Free for personal use without time and features limit. When beyond two users, pay for the functions you need.
Crystal Reportssmall to medium-sized business reporting needs$495.00/one-time/user, no free version but a free trial
JasperReportsJava developers who want to add reporting capabilities to their applications.The product is free, while the help documentation is commercial.
IzendaIT departments who are looking for an embedded reporting solutionstart from $12000.00/year
Cumul.iocompanies who have a SaaS platformStarts at $275/month
BI Suite with Reporting CapabilitiesZoho AnalyticsCXOs, sales managers, analysts, consultants$22-$445/monthly depending on the users and data amount, 15 days free trial
Yellowfinenterprises with analytics needsQuote based
Tableaubusiness analysts with analytics needsQuote based
SisenseCXOs, sales managers, analysts, consultantsQuote-based
BOARDsmall-to-midsize organizations with analytics needsQuote based
Financial Reporting ToolSage Intacctcompanies need to automate and integrate their budgeting, forecasting, reporting, and planning.Available upon request
Quickbookssmall businesses seeking accounting software suitable to their size.Start from $25 per month
Prophix Softwarecompanies need to automate and integrate their budgeting, forecasting, reporting, and planning.Available upon request, provide a free trial
insightsoftwareneed help creating financial reports from ExcelQuote based
Host Analyticscompanies have demand for finance automate processesAvailable upon request
Marketing Reporting ToolTapReportsmarketing agencies with creating branded reports from omnichannel for clients' campaignAvailable upon request
Supermetricssmaller teams that are just getting started with marketing analyticsDepends on the modules you choose, provides a 14-day free trial.
Google Analyticsmarketing team to track users' behaviors and customers' interactions with websitesthe basic version is free
DashThismarketing agencies or departments who need creating custom marketing reports$33-$499/month, depends on the number of dashboards.
Agency Analyticsmarketing agency or departments with the marketing campaign needs$49-$399/monthly, 14 days free trial
Sales Reporting ToolsAvisosales organizations who are interested in AI-powered solution$40 /user/month, or, quote-based for the enterprise
Datahug (SAP Sales Cloud)sales teams who want to integrated activities on one platformstart from $50/month
6senselarge and mid-sized companiesAvailable upon request
HubSpot Sales HubB2B salesstart from $50/month
InsightSquaredcompanies who hope to automate sales reporting Available upon request

3. What are the Reporting Tools?

If you are confused with the definition of different types of reporting tools, let’s check out some basic definitions of reporting tools.

Best reporting tool
Best reporting tool

Reporting tools allow you to extract and dynamically present data in the form of charts, tables, and other types of visualizations so users can translate data into actionable information and discover insights. In other words, you can view reporting software as various styles of dynamic data.

It also allows you to navigate the report through various hierarchies and visualization elements. The generated dynamic reports allow you to drill down through various data levels at the click of a button. You can also navigate, sort, filter, and view the data for your specific needs. 

Generally, there are two types of reporting software. 

One is the reporting software that mainly deals with the fixed report. When creating the fixed reports, the IT department will first define the picking-number formula and arithmetic logic. The background covers complex operations. Business people can view, add, delete, or change the data on the web in the foreground. It does not involve the modification of the report structure. The fixed report is the most common in daily report development. This type of reporting tool is suitable for IT departments and reports developers in different departments. The typical product is FineReport mentioned above.

Try FineReport Now

Another type of reporting tool works as the BI tools’ function, which is called self-service reporting.  Business people can drag the fields to create the reports without a predefined structure. It can deal with simple temporary queries. This type of reporting tool is suitable for data analysts or business analysts. The emergence of self­-service reporting capabilities has driven the levels of interactivity even further by giving the power to create and edit reports directly to decision-makers, further empowering them to drive businesses forward while decreasing the workload on developers and report developers. The representative of BI tools is FineBI.

Try FineBI Now

3.1 Excel VS Reporting Tools

Excel reporting is still the most popular software that companies use for making reports. People who often deal with reports know that it is very troublesome to use Excel as a reporting tool.  

First, generating reports manually makes it easy to make errors and is time-consuming. Second, it’s hard to detect problems in Excel in real time. Once the data is wrong, the query in Excel takes a lot of time. But with reporting tools, you can understand the data information through simple queries with the widgets. Finally, Excel spreadsheets are presented in very few ways. Although some of the Excel spreadsheets’ features are now much improved, they still lag reporting tools.

3.2 BI Software VS Reporting Tools

There are many BI software with data reporting capabilities. Many people confuse reporting software with BI software, but they are different. 

In conclusion, a reporting tool is mainly for data display, while a BI tool emphasizes data analysis

As mentioned above, reporting tools are primarily for IT departments or report developers. They use reporting software to make reports and chart reports electronic invoices, process sheets, receipts, etc. These show you past and current status.  

Business intelligence software is primarily for business people and data analysts. The essence of BI software is ‘data+business understanding’. The ‘data’ part is like the reporting software, which is statistics and presentation of data. ‘Business understanding’ means realizing in-depth data analysis and smart data forecasts via BI functions such as OLAP analysis, data mining, and so on. It tells you why the statuses are the way they are and how to improve performance moving forward.  

However, in terms of reports, BI software is weak in the richness of report styles, chart diversity, and print function. 

Take FineReport as an example. As reporting software, FineReport provides three reports: General Report, Aggregation Report, and Dashboard. Among them, the aggregation report allows users to drag and drop the aggregation blocks to create irregular reports. Users can also export or print the reports to different formats such as Excel, Word, and PDF. These particular functions make reporting tools distinctive in reporting.

4. How to Choose the Best Reporting Tool?

If you still be overwhelmed with the array of choices. You can follow the guide we summarized for choosing one from good enterprise reporting tools. Hope this will help you make your decision as easy as possible.

4.1 What Types of Data Sources does it Support?

A good reporting tool should support the most common databases. It includes mainstream relational databases: Oracle, SqlServer, MySql, DB2, Sybase, Access, Derby, Postgre or Informix.

Besides, it is better if it supports the use of data in Excel, Txt or XML documents, BI multi-dimensional databases such as Essbase, SSAS, SAP, HADOOP, or other data sources including stored procedures, SAP data sources, and heterogeneous data sources. The more data sources the reporting tool supports, the easier when we use it. 

As we know, enterprise data is from how many different systems and more complex data will be used in the future.

FineReport supports various data sources

4.2 How Easy is it to use the Report Designer?

We all want to design a report as quickly as possible. This based on how easy is the report designer to learn and how easy is it to use. It’s wonderful if we only use little or no coding. An Excel-based interface will help a lot if you want to save time and let your customer create reports by himself without IT help. Anyone who used Excel before can be a quick learner. 

reporting tools interface
Reporting tools’ designer interface (from FineReport)

4.3 Does it Support the Complex Report and Rich Visual Effects?

Inevitably, some complex reports incorporate different sections or sub-sections, combining different report types and formats. 

An excellent reporting tool must support it and make it easy to work.

complex reports (from Finereport)
Reports Template (from Finereport)

Also, rich tables, graphs, and charts must be supported to display complex data, making it easier to read.

Interactive data visualization
Visualizations with report tools (FineReport)

4.4 Does the Reporting Tool Support Mobile Devices?

Many people would agree that we’ve just entered the “post-PC” era. We are soon going to be surfing almost exclusively on our smartphones and tablets. 

Mobile Applications can make us check the report anywhere at any time, periodically send reports we want, and warn us if an emergency happens.

mobile reporting tools
Mobile report tool (FineReport)

4.5 What Types of Export and Printing Formats Does it Support?

Exporting reports is a convenient way to share or do more in-depth analysis. So, it is important that the reporting software can support exporting .pdf, Word, Excel, .txt, .svg, images, or other formats. 

Printing the reports is also a common demand. We want to use an easy way to print and get high accuracy. Therefore, a wide variety of print controls, including page-break printing, scale printing, silent printing, or offset printing, is also needed to meet different print requirements.

4.6 Is the Reporting Software an Open Application?

An open application means flexible customization. 

The open reporting software lets developers use web scripts or API interfaces for deep development and control. And if it can support plug-in development, there will be rich and amazing functions for the reporting systems you build.

Easy Deployment and Integration
From FineReport

FineReport is free without time or feature limits for personal use. For enterprises, it offers a quote-based plan that charges according to different situations. In a word, FineReport is price-friendly to all customers.

Try FineReport Now
Free Trial of FineReport

Feel free to make an appointment for a live demo with our product experts. We will be more clear about your needs and see how FineReport can help you and your organization transform data into value.

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