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Create Reports from USPS Data in Google Data Studio

Use the CData Cloud Hub to create a virtual MySQL Database for USPS data and create custom reports in Google Data Studio.

Google Data Studio allows you to create branded reports with data visualizations to share with your clients. When paired with the CData Cloud Hub, you get instant, cloud-to-cloud access to USPS data for visualizations, dashboards, and more. This article shows how to create a virtual database for USPS and build reports from USPS data in Google Data Studio.

The CData Cloud Hub provides a pure MySQL, cloud-to-cloud interface for USPS, allowing you to easily build reports from live USPS data in Google Data Studio — without replicating the data to a natively supported database. As you build visualizations, Google Data Studio generates SQL queries to gather data. Using optimized data processing out of the box, the CData Cloud Hub pushes all supported SQL operations (filters, JOINs, etc) directly to USPS, leveraging server-side processing to quickly return USPS data.

Create a Virtual MySQL Database for USPS Data

CData Cloud Hub uses a straightforward, point-and-click interface to connect to data sources and generate APIs.

  1. Login to Cloud Hub and click Databases.
  2. Select "USPS" from Available Data Sources.
  3. Enter the necessary authentication properties to connect to USPS.

    To authenticate with USPS, set the following connection properties.

    • PostageProvider: The postage provider to use to process requests. Available options are ENDICIA and STAMPS. If unspecified, this property will default to ENDICIA.
    • UseSandbox: This controls whether live or test requests are sent to the production or sandbox servers. If set to true, the Password, AccountNumber, and StampsUserId properties are ignored.
    • StampsUserId: This value is used for logging into authentication to the Stamps servers. This value is not applicable for Endicia and is optional if UseSandbox is true.
    • Password: This value is used for logging into Endicia and Stamps servers. If the postage provider is Endicia, this will be the pass phrase associated with your postage account. It is optional if UseSandbox is true.
    • AccountNumber: The shipper's account number. It is optional if UseSandbox is true.
    • PrintLabelLocation: This property is required to use the GenerateLabels or GenerateReturnLabels stored procedures. This should be set to the folder location where generated labels should be stored.

    The Cache Database

    Many of the useful task available from USPS require a lot of data. To ensure this data is easy to input and recall later, utilize a cache database to make requests. Set the cache connection properties in order to use the cache:

    • CacheLocation: The path to the cache location, for which a connection will be configured with the default cache provider. For example, C:\users\username\documents\uspscache

    As an alternative to CacheLocation, set the combination of CacheConnection and CacheProvider to configure a cache connection using a provider separate from the default.

  4. Click Test Database.
  5. Click Privileges -> Add and add the new user (or an existing user) with the appropriate permissions.

With the virtual database created, you are ready to connect to USPS data from any MySQL client.

Visualize Live USPS Data in Google Data Studio

The steps below outline connecting to the CData Cloud Hub from Google Data Studio to create a new USPS data source and build a simple visualization from the data.

  1. Log into Google Data Studio, click data sources, create a new data source and choose MySQL.
  2. Choose the basic configuration and set the connection properties:
    • Host name or IP: myinstance.cdatacloud.net
    • Port: 3306
    • Database: uspsdb
    • Username: your Cloud Hub username
    • Password: your Cloud Hub password
    • Click Enable SSL, then upload the certificates
  3. Click Authenticate
  4. Select the table to visualize or enter a custom query and click Connect.
    NOTE: JOINs are not supported in the user interface, but they are supported as custom queries.
  5. If needed, modify columns, click Create Report and add the data source to the report.
  6. Select a visualization style and add it to the report.
  7. Select Dimensions and Measures to customize your visualization.

SQL Access to USPS Data from Cloud Applications

Now you have a direct, cloud-to-cloud connection to live USPS data from your Google Data Studio workbook. You can create more data sources and new visualizations, build reports, and more — all without replicating USPS data.

To get SQL data access to 100+ SaaS, Big Data, and NoSQL sources directly from your cloud applications, see the CData Cloud Hub.