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Visualize PayPal Data in Tableau

The CData ODBC driver for PayPal enables you integrate PayPal data into Tableau dashboards.

The CData ODBC Driver for PayPal enables you to access live PayPal data in business intelligence tools like Tableau. In this article, you will integrate PayPal data into a dashboard that reflects changes to PayPal data in real time.

The CData ODBC drivers offer unmatched performance for interacting with live PayPal data in Tableau due to optimized data processing built into the driver. When you issue complex SQL queries from Tableau to PayPal, the driver pushes supported SQL operations, like filters and aggregations, directly to PayPal and utilizes the embedded SQL engine to process unsupported operations (often SQL functions and JOIN operations) client-side. With built-in dynamic metadata querying, you can visualize and analyze PayPal data using native Tableau data types.

Connect to PayPal as an ODBC Data Source

If you have not already, first specify connection properties in an ODBC DSN (data source name). This is the last step of the driver installation. You can use the Microsoft ODBC Data Source Administrator to create and configure ODBC DSNs.

The provider surfaces tables from two PayPal APIs. The APIs use different authentication methods.

  • The REST API uses the OAuth standard. To authenticate to the REST API, you will need to set the OAuthClientId, OAuthClientSecret, and CallbackURL properties.
  • The Classic API requires Signature API credentials. To authenticate to the Classic API, you will need to obtain an API username, password, and signature.

See the "Getting Started" chapter of the help documentation for a guide to obtaining the necessary API credentials.

To select the API you want to work with, you can set the Schema property to REST or SOAP. By default the SOAP schema will be used.

For testing purposes you can set UseSandbox to true and use sandbox credentials.

When you configure the DSN, you may also want to set the Max Rows connection property. This will limit the number of rows returned, which is especially helpful for improving performance when designing reports and visualizations.

Add PayPal Data to a Dashboard

  1. Click Connect to Data -> More Servers -> Other Databases (ODBC).
    Select the CData Data Source Name (for example: CData PayPal Source).
  2. In the Database menu, select CData.
  3. In the Table box, enter a table name or click New Custom SQL to enter an SQL query. This article retrieves the Transactions table.
  4. Drag the table onto the join area. At this point, you can include multiple tables, leveraging the built-in SQL engine to process complex data requests.
  5. In the Connection menu, select the Live option, so that you skip loading a copy of the data into Tableau and instead work on real-time data. The optimized data processing native to CData ODBC drivers enables unmatched performance in live connectivity.
  6. Click the tab for your worksheet. Columns are listed as Dimensions and Measures, depending on the data type. The CData driver discovers data types automatically, allowing you to leverage the powerful data processing and visualization features of Tableau.
  7. Drop the Date column in the Dimensions pane onto the dashboard. When you select dimensions, Tableau builds a query to the driver. The results are grouped based on that dimension. In Tableau, the raw query is automatically modified as you select dimensions and measures.
  8. Drag the GrossAmount column in the Measures field onto the Detail and Color buttons. Tableau executes the following query:

    SELECT Date, SUM(GrossAmount) FROM Transactions GROUP BY Date

    When you select a measure, Tableau executes a command to the driver to calculate a summary function, such as SUM, AVG, etc., on the grouped values. The SQL engine (embedded within the driver) is leveraged to process the aggregation of the data, where needed, providing a seamless experience in Tableau, regardless of the data source.

    To change the summary function, open the GrossAmount menu and select the summary you want in the Measure command.

  9. You can create other charts using dimensions and measures to build SQL queries visually:

With the CData ODBC Driver for PayPal, you get live connectivity to your PayPal data, allowing you to build real-time charts, graphs, and more.