How Packhelp uses Segment to improve data quality and management

Packhelp reduced integration installation from twelve hours to two using Segment.

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“To launch a new integration with Segment, we just write it once, and it works.”

— Patryk Kabaj, Co-Founder at Packhelp

The Company

Packhelp is an online marketplace for custom branded packaging based in Warsaw, Poland. Established in 2015, the company provides innovative packaging solutions for e-commerce brands, retailers, agencies, and enterprises, with a customer base that includes more than 15,000 customers in over 30 markets.

The company was looking for a solution that would help them collect disparate datasets in a much more strategic and structured way. Additionally, they were rapidly testing new integrations and needed a solution that could help them flexibly integrate with marketing and analytics tools without having to rely on scare engineering resources.

They found Segment to be the best solution to take their data management and engineering capacity to the next level.

The Challenge

An overwhelming amount of scattered events

Product managers and engineers want the same thing: to ship good products faster. Since the beginning, Packhelp used analytics as a way to support this mission.  However, they lacked the infrastructure to easily handle these disparate datasets used across the business.

Previously, Packhelp was managing events from various sources, including Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager, e-commerce tracking, and FullStory. 

“I remember thinking, this isn’t working. We had all these different event APIs, collecting different services from different places all the time.”

Without a consistent method of collecting data, product and engineering had to jump from tool to tool to get their hands on the data and analyze it. 

An expensive approach to managing integrations 

Packhelp relies on quickly testing and optimizing new integrations to continue to grow their business. Therefore, agility is critical to create the best stack, build trust in their data, and make informed decisions. 

At the time, Packhelp’s engineering team had to add and remove each integration by hand, slowing down the adoption of new and valuable integrations. Moreover, when engineers had an issue with an integration, they had to learn the custom workflows of each tool, which took time away from shipping new products and features. Patryk Kabaj, Packhelp’s Co-Founder, recalls one of many evenings he spent fixing broken integrations.

To remove an integration from the code base, for example, it would take up to two days of coding to make sure everything was okay. Roughly every month, the engineering team needed to test the new stack and take time away from building customer-facing features.

Testing new integrations gave us better knowledge of what’s happening in the product, but we’d spend so much time on integrations that we couldn’t move forward.

Between research, QA, pull request code review, and more, it could cost Packhelp significant time and money to test a new tool. This was not scalable for a fast-growing startup. 

The Solution

Taking data governance to the next level

Thanks to Segment Protocols, the Packhelp team can proactively identify issues, eliminate time cleaning up data, and establish confidence in the data their tools provide. 

The team now has a single source of truth for customer data and can standardize data across all channels and platforms. Aligning everyone from marketing to product which events they collect, what they mean, and the business metrics they drive.

Less time manually integrating different tools, more time shipping them

Segment is now the bedrock of the Packhelp tech stack, allowing teams to test new tools and integrations effortlessly. Using Segment’s Replay feature, they can switch in and out of tools effortlessly.  They can send a sample of their data to a new tool to test it out, or backfill a different tool with a full set of historical data, with no-warm up time or gaps to disrupt their work.  To test out a new tool, all the team has to do is to “write it once, and it works.” 

When launching a new integration, I simply send the team a Slack describing the changes and what they should expect. That’s it. Compare this to the twelve hours we spent implementing tools previously. 

The Results

Packhelp knew that standardized data was key to providing quality data they could use and analyses and campaigns. A chaotic infrastructure could no longer do, as their customer base grew and demanded more innovative features.

By partnering with Segment to create a single source of truth for customer data, Packhelp improved data quality and saved time and money by becoming a more agile operation.

Today, Packhelp’s scaled process of tracking and managing events has supplied the startup with a data infrastructure to ship good products, frequently, and achieve the foundation they needed for rapid growth. 

Industry: Consumer Products
Location: Warsaw, Poland