How to Translate SQL Joins to Alteryx

Old habits die hard…

The main obstacle I found when ramping up on Alteryx was to understand how to perform a very basic task: Joining two tables!

The mainstream SQL way to Joins was ingrained in me, reinforced by Tableau Blending and Alteryx has adopted a quite different approach with the objective of being more user friendly by not requiring knowledge of SQL. Yet the first step is tricky, as the Alteryx way can require a sequence that adds the Union tool to the Join tool…

Here is the standard Alteryx explanation:

Yet, I wish I had this excellent resource when I started:

Kudos to Laszlo Zsom for detailing the respective approaches, and concluding with this summary to keep handy:

Information Labs’ excellent cheat sheet


Now if you still can’t get over having to drop that old SQL habit while using Alteryx, there is an option for you: the Advanced Join tool!

Advanced Join


This tool is not part of the “factory install” of Alteryx, and is not officially maintained, but it is a free macro,  very easy to install and use: 

It offers a very simple configuration:

Advanced Join 2

And I tested it extensively, works great! Beats a VLOOKUP() any day if you ask me…

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2 Responses to How to Translate SQL Joins to Alteryx

  1. Pingback: 10 Tricks to adopt Redshift In-DB | Insights Through Data

  2. These examples are meant to help analysts who write SQL code to understand how to translate their SQL knowledge into an Alteryx workflow.

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