Querying Tips
  • 09 Nov 2022
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Querying Tips

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Article summary

Be Clear and Be Specific  

Complex answers don’t always require complex questions. Even if you have a lot of different dimensions or filters you’d like to apply to the data, make sure that each question you ask is about a single topic, or that the relationship between the topics you’re querying is crystal clear.  

Understand the Value of Unique Labels  

Unique labels are descriptive labels that are associated with different variables in your database. These can include things like customer names, vendor names, product names, and more. To find out what unique labels are contained in your database, try querying a specific theme or topic such as “all customers” or “all vendors” or something even more specific like “all expense accounts”. Understanding the unique value labels in your database can help you develop specific and intentional queries that get you the answers you need, faster.  

Structure Your Queries Intentionally  

When it comes to querying your data, there are a number of strategies or techniques that you can employ to access the data you need quickly and easily. Below are a handful of helpful concepts that you can use when querying your data:  


Groupables are identifiers connected to a domain that can be aggregated. Use the term “by” to include a groupable, such as:  

Product names (e.g. “Sales by product”)  
Customer names (e.g. "Sales by customer")  
Timeframes (e.g. “Sales by month")  


To filter by exclusionary criteria, use terms like “greater than” or “less than”.  
To filter by threshold, use terms like “over” or “under”.  
To filter by time period, use terms like “in the past year” or “over the last 6 months”.  

Calculations vs. Lists  

To have a query perform a calculation automatically, use terms within your query that reflect the required calculation, such as “total” or “average”.  
To receive a list as a response, use terms within your query like “all” or “list”.

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