In a global economy, real-time data analysis is closely related to business success. Without data-driven insights, organizations find it challenging to remain competitive, improve company performance, and deliver strong user experiences, regardless of their industry. 

To match the pace of business, companies require transparent, data-driven relationships. Unfortunately, data silos serve as a roadblock for data sharing and analysis within organizations and with partners, vendors, suppliers, and customers.To be clear, data is not the problem. In 2025, IDC predicts global data generation will reach 175 zettabytes (ZB). There’s plenty of data.

The real problem is traditional data sharing methods. Organizations still rely on emailing spreadsheets, conducting batch processes with FTP or ETL, and using APIs. These data sharing methods aren’t secure or scalable, and they waste time, money, and resources. Worst of all, they result in stale data copies.

The answer is secure data sharing, which eliminates the need to copy or transform data. With its cloud-built architecture, Snowflake’s cloud data platform enables live data to be shared from its original location without copying or moving the data. 

That’s right: Data doesn’t move with secure data sharing. Those who are granted access simply reference the data in a controlled and secure manner, including across regions, cloud providers, and even companies without a Snowflake account. Secure data sharing is global and inclusive.

Snowflake is now taking secure data sharing one step further by providing data exchanges

Data exchanges are the demolition tools that break down data silos and change how organizations acquire, leverage, and monetize data. They enable discovery of trusted data sets, control and management over data consumption, metrics on data usage, and monetization of data.

The only question is which type of data exchange is right for your organization. 

To understand the features of each type of data exchange and discover the best match for your needs, start with the five strategies below. For more detail and recommendations, download our ebook, Five Strategies to Improve Secure Data Collaboration.

#1 Intra-company strategy

Are you looking for ways to break down internal data silos and improve operational efficiency? 

Many organizations, especially multinational and global companies, struggle to share data across business units, departments, locations, and subsidiaries. 

The intra-company strategy provides a central location for approved and secure data, which results in better internal collaboration and productivity, stronger data-driven insights, and faster time to market.

#2 Cross-company strategy

Do you want to exchange data with external organizations, improve collaboration, and open up monetization opportunities?

In a global economy, collaboration with external partners, suppliers, vendors, and customers spurs growth and productivity, improves business relationships, and delivers new insights, but it requires data sharing that keeps proprietary data safe and secure. 

The cross-company strategy provides the means to invite other organizations to publish and/or access data with established data control guidelines and monitoring capabilities.

#3 Data sourcing strategy

Are you searching for new sources of external data and ways to reduce data analysis costs? 

In some industries, companies gain a competitive advantage by using external data. Unique data sets that complement internal data can help generate better insights through richer analytics. However, sourcing external data at scale in a governed way can be challenging. 

The data sourcing strategy enables data vendors to publish their data sets in your central portal where your data scientists can access and evaluate the data to determine what to acquire. You gain visibility into data usage, ensure security, and can make more informed decisions to improve future data acquisition and usage. 

#4 Data distribution strategy

Do you want to share data externally and monetize your data assets at scale to create new revenue streams?

As a data provider, it can be challenging to provide direct data access to customers and to personalize your data feeds to deliver better customer experiences that increase retention. 

The data distribution strategy enables you to create and host a walled garden of shared data. Customers access data securely through the online data portal, and you can personalize the experience through monitoring and tracking data usage. You also reduce costs and improve margins by removing reliance on APIs or FTP.

#5 Hybrid strategy

Did you answer “yes” to two or more of the questions above?

Why limit collaboration to one strategy? Many Snowflake customers fall into the hybrid category because data exchanges remove data limits and open up new business opportunities.

The hybrid strategy allows you to benefit from multiple data collaboration scenarios and demonstrates how limitless your data-driven insights can be.

To learn more about how to select a data exchange, download our ebook, Five Strategies to Improve Secure Data Collaboration.