What is Looker Studio and How to Use It?

Published: 18 January 2023

Updated: 19 January 2023

What is Looker Studio and How to Use It?

Google Looker Studio is an advanced cloud-based analytics platform for businesses of all sizes. It provides an intuitive, easy-to-use interface for creating powerful data visualizations and reports that help organizations identify trends, opportunities, and insights in their data. With Google Looker Studio, businesses can connect to a variety of data sources, including Google BigQuery, Salesforce, and Oracle.

The Updated Version of Google Data Studio

Looker Studio was designed with the end user in mind, allowing users to explore business data without the need for complex coding. By using drag-and-drop functionality, users can create sophisticated dashboards quickly and easily by combining different types of visuals such as charts, maps, tables, etc. Once these visuals are complete, they can be easily shared with other team members or customers via email or other online platforms.

Google Looker Studio: Main Features

In addition to its user-friendly design, Looker Studio offers a range of powerful features such as:

  • Advanced filtering capabilities
  • Different modeling method (LookML)
  • Custom calculations
  • Free and paid versions
  • Support for collaborative data exploration
  • Multi-user access control
  • More flexible data modeling features
  • Integration with Google Sheets
  • Merging features from different data sources
  • Integration with Google Cloud Platform services like BigQuery and Sheets
  • Automated scheduling for scheduled reports
  • Supports 50+ SQLs and databases
  • Looker Studio API

Another great feature that Looker Studio offers is a large number of ‘connectors’ that connect reports to data. With them, you can easily access and use data. Looker Studio offers two types of connectors — Google and Partner.

Google Connectors allows you to collect data from Google-affiliated platforms such as Google Sheets, Google Analytics, BigQuery, and Youtube. You can link Looker Studio to them for free. Currently, there’re more than 20 free connectors that sync with Google-affiliated platforms.

Google Connectors

Source: datastudio.google.com

Partner Connectors allow you to collect data from platforms built and supported by Looker Studio partners. They include Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Ads, Instagram Insights, Shopify, Semrush Domain Analytics, and more.

Partner Connectors

Source: datastudio.google.com

Also, Looker Studio allows you to create visualizations for clients that explain the charts, tables, and graphs within the reports. Here’s what a typical report looks like in Looker Studio:

Looker Studio report

Source: datastudio.google.com

You can also do the following in Looker Data Studio:

  • Change fonts and colors
  • Decide what type of data you want to share
  • Add a video to explain something to a client
  • Use graphics, bar charts, and tables
  • Brand the report with your client’s logo
  • Add text to explain what’s displayed in the report

The reports are dynamic, so when there’s an update to the original data source, the new information automatically pops up on any reports that reference that source. Besides, you can share the reports and give people permission to view them or make edits.

All these features make it easier for businesses to gain valuable insights from their data in near real time.

Difference Between Google Data Studio and Looker Studio

The main difference between Looker Studio and Data Studio is that Data Studio is primarily focused on value-added reporting services while Looker takes a more comprehensive approach to analysis. Whereas Data Studio allows users to visualize existing datasets within the platform on an ad hoc basis, Looker enables users to create new models based on various combinations of existing datasets that are populated through structured queries. This enables greater flexibility in modeling complex relationships across multiple datasets, further enhancing accuracy in identifying correlations and patterns that may otherwise be difficult to spot using traditional methods such as pivot tables or manual queries.

Moreover, whereas Data Studio’s primary focus is on visualization (i.e., graphical representations of data), Looker adds another layer of complexity by enabling users to query multiple datasets simultaneously, which helps them identify new correlations quickly and accurately depending on the type of analysis being conducted. This makes it much easier for teams to uncover useful insights from large volumes of disparate data sources without manually writing queries each time.

Another difference lies in the way data is modeled. Looker Studio uses LookML (Looker Modeling Language). This is a language used to describe aggregates, dimensions, calculations, and data relationships in a SQL database. LookML is a convenient modeling solution with more than 100 premade modules and modeling patterns. Unlike LookML, Data Studio provides a standalone model by accessing the data sources. As it needs to operate in the underlying data platform, it’s not often recommended for data blending. Looker’s modeling features are more flexible. It allows you to combine different data sources and build a unified reporting model.

Regarding analytics features, Google Data Studio provides basic analysis capabilities with features like filtering and sorting by column or row. It also allows you to create calculated fields using formulas or combine multiple datasets into one view for deeper insights. Looker Studio provides more advanced analysis capabilities with features like pivot tables and custom queries that allow you to drill down into specific areas of your dataset for deeper insights into trends over time or across different areas.

Google Looker (Data) Studio Overview: How to Create Reports?

1. Sign up

To access Looker Studio, visit this page and log in. If you’re new to Looker Studio, sign up for a free trial account. You will be asked initial questions, including your company name, country, email preferences, etc.

Once you’ve signed up, you’ll be able to explore all of the features available in the platform, including creating your own custom queries and dashboards. Additionally, with a free trial account, you’ll also have access to tutorials and support resources that can help answer any questions that may arise as you learn how to use the platform.

2. Use the Looker Studio dashboard

Dashboards are a great way to visualize information and expose it in a stunning way. In Google Looker Studio, you can choose from several templates or start your work from the ground up. To better understand how the tool works, click ‘Tutorial Report,’ which will teach you the basics of the platform.

Looker Studio Tutorial report

Source: datastudio.google.com

3. Explore data sources

Once you have set up your account, the next step is to explore the various data sources available in Looker Studio. You can connect to databases such as MySQL, PostgreSQL, MongoDB, BigQuery, Snowflake, Redshift, and more. You can also connect to APIs such as Salesforce and Facebook Ads Manager. After connecting your data sources, you will be able to begin exploring your data within Looker Studio’s interface.

Looker studio data sources

Source: datastudio.google.com

4. Create visualizations

Once you have connected your data sources and explored the data within them, the next step is to begin creating visualizations using Looker Studio’s powerful tools. With these tools, you can create a variety of different types of visuals, including charts and graphs, that help bring your data to life. Additionally, you can use filters to narrow down what is displayed on the screen so that only relevant information is visible at any given time.

5. Export and share the report when it’s ready

If you feel satisfied with the results, you can share your report from Google Looker (Data) Studio. You can export it as either a PDF or CSV file so that it can be shared easily with other users. To do this, click on the “Export” button at the top of your report page and select which format you would like your report exported in (PDF or CSV).

Once you have exported your report as a PDF or CSV file, you can share it with other users via email or shared storage services such as Dropbox or Google Drive. If sharing via email, simply attach the exported file to an email message and send it off! If sharing through shared storage services such as Dropbox or Google Drive, simply upload the exported file into these services and provide access/permission to view/edit/download the file for other users.


Overall, while both Google Data Studio and Looker offer powerful analytics toolsets suitable for different needs depending on the size and complexity of the dataset being analyzed – Google Data Studio is better suited towards creating basic visualizations quickly while Looker provides more robust capabilities when it comes making sense out of more complex datasets due its ability to model relationships across multiple datasets using structured queries rather than manual manipulation.

We hope that you now have a better understanding of what Google Looker Studio is and how it can help you unlock valuable insights from your data. By getting started today with a free trial account (or upgrading later on), you’ll be well on your way towards unlocking meaningful insights from your organization’s data!

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