Swivel.com is a new online data analysis tool that lets users easily share their data charts and graphs. Users can view data generated by others, and manipulate the numbers themselves if they wish. Users have the option of making their data available to the public, or just to a group of people which they define. The Swivel data analysis tools allow data to be compared in new ways. For example, users could compare the rise in the crime rate with the cost of a first class stamp if they wanted to. Users can upload spreadsheets from Excel documents, or import data from Google Docs, Google Analytics, Intuit QuickBooks or SalesForce.com.
The Swivel site makes it very easy for users to share data. Rather than having to get the IT department to pull data from the company's files, data can be uploaded and shared by individuals in the company. The site has some social networking aspects, such as Groups, Profiles and Feedback. Anyone can leave feedback on a public chart or graph – group members can leave feedback on a private chart or graph. The service is free as long as data is made public. If the user wishes to create charts and graphs that are kept private, there is a charge for the service.
Swivel.com was launched in December 2006 and has undergone continuous growth since launch.
Competition to Swivel.com comes from sites such as Google Docs, Microsoft Live Documents, and desktop applications such as Excel. The primary difference that Swivel has is the ability to share data more easily. The site makes it easy to embed charts and graphs in blogs or emails. In addition, not only can data be shared, but users can manipulate the shared data themselves using the tools provided by Swivel.com. Google Analytics and Microsoft Live Documents provide sharing of private data without charge, however, while Swivel users must pay a fee to share private data.
The Swivel.com site has an uncluttered look and feel. The site is quite responsive and page loads happen quickly. The site provides a convenient top menu bar for navigation, and use of the tools provided by the site is intuitive. Uploads and downloads of data are quite responsive as well. There is no advertising displayed on the Swivel.com site.
Registration to Swivel.com is free and is required to use the site. The registration process asks for name and email address. The email address must be validated, at which time the user selects a password. Users with a free account may use the site as much as they wish as long as their data is kept public. Users wishing to limit access to data to a group of people must pay a fee.
Pricing for private groups is divided into three group sizes – Small, Medium and Large. A Small group allows for unlimited members, 20 spreadsheets, 20 charts and 3 reports. A Medium group allows for unlimited members, 80 spreadsheets, 80 charts and 20 reports. A Large group allows for unlimited members, 200 spreadsheets, 200 charts and 50 reports. There is a 15-day free trial period for all three pricing plans. Small, Medium and Large groups cost $12, $48, and $96 per month respectively.
The Swivel.com site is recommended to any business or organization that has a need to share data with its members or the public at large. The site is being used by newspapers and colleges to share the data behind news stories or research studies. Companies are using the site to share data among employees. The charting and graphing tools provided by the site are easy to use, and the site makes it very easy to share data.