Santa Cruz Tech Beat


Looker Delivers a Data Platform with Looker Blocks


September 23, 2015 — Santa Cruz, CA

Hundreds of companies are consolidating their analytics on Looker’s Data Platform

Looker Blocks are apps that are components of business logic, such as churn prediction or lifetime value metrics, which can be put together and customized to address data needs company-wide as well as any industry-specific requirements.

Looker, the company on a mission to power data-driven companies, has just announced Looker Blocks. Reusable and customizable, Looker Blocks are apps that are components of business logic, such as churn prediction or lifetime value metrics, which can be put together and customized to address data needs company-wide as well as any industry-specific requirements. Combine a few Looker Blocks and businesses can start to access and analyze data faster and have the tools to address all of the data needs across their entire organization. Like the building blocks of analysis, Looker Blocks can be used to analyze the sales funnel, monitor customer health, conduct sophisticated web analytics, or optimize an online storefront – essentially any analysis that a company might need.

When Looker started four years ago, it became wildly successful with data analysts because it can easily describe, transform, and interrelate data directly within analytic databases. Over time, Looker added visualization and analysis tools and began offering self-service exploration for business teams. Today, Looker’s unique data modeling layer remains central to Looker’s success as it offers data analysts the ability to create centralized and reliable definitions for the business that everyone can use – a huge pain point for even the newest self-service analytics and data discovery tools in the market. With Looker Blocks, Looker has made public the best of these centralized metrics and has turned their data modeling layer into a full Data Platform that can easily consolidate all analytics functions across an entire organization. In the future, we expect Looker Blocks to represent the industry standard in best analytical practices for any business.

“In today’s competitive market, every business in every industry should be leveraging data to make informed decisions, but available tools offer either limited views of the data or require data experts to answer even simple questions,” said Frank Bien, Looker CEO. “Now with Looker Blocks, Looker’s Data Platform is clearly the solution to company-wide analytics – offering a way for analysts to centralize their business logic while also offering access and exploration to everyone.”

“We use data to make all business decisions at Avant, and Looker has allowed us to standardize definitions across the entire organization,” said Charles Whittaker, Director of Business Intelligence at Avant. “Everyone from our attorneys to our CEO use Looker to make quicker and smarter business decisions.”

Looker-bocks-text“Blue Hill finds that Looker Blocks removes technical barriers to disseminating analytic capabilities throughout an organization by providing starter kits for common enterprise data sources and specific departmental analyses,” stated James Haight, Research Analyst at Blue Hill Research. “By providing a standardized foundation for conducting key analytic use cases, Looker Blocks represents an important step forward for organizations seeking to balance the triple challenge of supporting centralized data, self-service analysis, and specialized departmental and vertical insights.”

Two categories of Looker Blocks are offered – Analytics and Source.

Customers can use Source Blocks to quickly describe and join together data from these common data sources:

  • Salesforce
  • Segment
  • Snowplow
  • Zendesk
  • Marketo

Analytics Blocks can be used to answer any business question by plugging in specific field names into each of these analytical design patterns:

  • Affinity – Answer questions around user basket purchases and any question that begins with “who also…?”
  • Life-Time – Understand lifetime value, lifetime spend, and lifetime engagement of customers.
  • Cohorting – Compare users, grouped by attributes such as creation time, performance on ramp, average engagement, churn time, and many more.
  • Funnel – View any type of funnel pipeline, including website navigation, customer purchases, inbound demand generation, workflow partitioning, loan processing, etc.
  • Session – Analyze time or event-based activities at the individual user level, such as typical click-streams of a user, conversion rates of users who viewed a certain ad, landing page bounce rates, or whatever custom event flow makes sense for your business needs.

Looker Blocks was inspired by the more than 350 industry-leading companies building data-driven cultures with Looker including Yahoo!, Gilt, Etsy, Avant, Autodesk, and Sony.

Learn more at



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