Invoice2go provides quick and convenient invoicing solutions for small businesses. Their custom invoice templates, payment manager, and mobile app for invoices-on-the-go help hundreds of thousands of small business owners bill over $24 billion per year.
Each Invoice2go team depends on data in different ways to help the company innovate and expand its market reach. For instance,
- Product management tracks how users are interacting with the website and app,
- User acquisition monitors installations, app ratings, and app rankings, while
- Customer research develops a qualitative understanding of their ideal customer.
- Executives can see how the business is performing on an hour-to-hour basis
Invoice2go strives to enhance customer experience while maintaining its position as one of the world’s most downloaded invoice and billing apps. They realized to do so and stay ahead of new competing products, they needed to overhaul their data infrastructure. Their data ecosystem lacked the agility, robustness, and modern framework needed to achieve their targets.
CHALLENGES OF GROWTH
Invoice2go’s prior core data streams relied on two Apache Spark clusters, but as the company grew and user demands evolved the data ecosystem became fragile and risk-laden. The Data Team was spending countless hours fixing bugs rather than focusing on new developments. A few of the specific challenges included:
Schema changes cause lost data
One of the key data pipelines took Kinesis streams to S3 as Parquet files and then loaded data to Redshift. However, (since the Spark cluster ran on an old Protobuf library), new data attributes were completely lost when schemas changed, risking system collapse with a major schema version roll-out.
Complexity increases risk and lowers confidence
Pipelines included thousands of lines of Scala code and multiple build tools and deployment procedures. This required a large team of engineers to write code and fix bugs and a fragile system that limited the team’s trust in the data.
BUILDING A MODERN DATA ECOSYSTEM WITH AWS AND ETLEAP
As the team assessed its data needs and planned a more modern data ecosystem and data integration tool, they set the following goals:
- Deliver data and tooling for all Invoice2go divisions to meet high-level company objectives.
- Reduce complexity
- Minimize time spent on coding
- Seamless compatibility with AWS
- Ability to incorporate diverse data, including JSON, Parquet files, Postgres databases, and webhooks.
After considering twelve ETL vendors and running trials with four of them, they determined Etleap was the best option to help them meet all their needs.
COMPREHENSIVE SOLUTION BRINGS STABILITY AND SIMPLICITY
Invoice2go implemented a new platform that consists of Amazon DynamoDB, AWS Lambda, AWS Kinesis Data Firehose, Terraform, and Etleap. With the previous pipeline setup, the transformation code was thousands of lines that took multiple engineers to develop. Etleap condenses this workload into a few clicks, producing pipelines in minutes.
"The work that used to go into building these pipelines manually is phenomenal. With Etleap we simply click and go, setting up a pipeline in a couple of minutes. Etleap made the migration so easy and allowed us to beat our deadline.”
- Alain Kramar, Senior Software Engineer, Invoice2go
IMPACT: STRONGER ANALYTICS AND A LEAN, EFFECTIVE DATA TEAM
With the new environment in place, Invoice2go has seen big improvements in providing data access, reducing the workload on the data team, and thus enabling better focus on its customers
Teams across the company have reaped the benefits of the revamp
- Product management has been able to construct more fluid app flows that lead to higher conversion.
- User acquisition has spearheaded dynamic and targeted marketing campaigns.
- Customer research understands their patrons on a more granular level.
- The executive team has noted the seamlessness and stability of the data flow. Whether evaluating subscriber count, payment volume from the previous day, or how the business is performing at a high level, they are assured that the data they’re using to make competitive decisions is as immediate as it is impactful.
"I want the Data Team to spend less time on boilerplate tooling and more time enabling product managers, customer research, and analysts to do their jobs more efficiently. A tool like Etleap lets us build out a new pipeline with a few clicks. This allows our team to optimize time spent on business-specific Invoice2go objectives, not building out EMR clusters."
- Alain Kramar
The data team has gained efficiency and stayed lean
In today’s competitive labor market, finding available software engineers with the knowledge and flexibility required to turn out exceptional code is a challenge. Thus, maintaining a compact, efficient team is imperative. Now, Invoice2go’s data team can do complex transformations with Etleap’s Data Wrangler, but in a fraction of the time and cost.
Better focus on the core mission
With modern data pipelines in place and robust ETL to match, Invoice2go can better connect with small business owners and stand out against the competition. Whether it’s subscriber volume, email events, tracking data, or web clicks, teams have more data than ever with which to make smart decisions and execute profit-generating projects. Without the threat of bugs and downtime, Invoice2go can focus on its core mission of empowering small businesses with superior payment and invoice options.