Why Small Businesses Should be Using Big Data
Big businesses aren’t the only ones who can make data-driven decisions using big data these days. Small businesses can reap the benefits, too. Analyzing all the online and offline information that you can helps to grow your business.
Big data is defined as very large datasets that can be analyzed computationally to reveal patterns, trends, and associations – especially in connection with human behavior and interactions. A big data revolution has arrived with the growth of the Internet, wireless networks, smartphones, social media and other technology.
Organizations who discuss using big data usually have the resources to hire research forms and data scientists to do the work for them. But, if you know where to look, small businesses can finally step up to the plate and utilize big data, themselves.
1. Using big data cuts your costs
A recent Tech Cocktail article looks at how Twiddy & Company Realtors cut their costs by 15%. The company compared maintenance charges for contractors against the average of its other vendors. Through this process, the company identified and eliminated invoice-processing errors and automated service schedules.
2. Using big data increases your efficiency
Using digital technology tools boosts your business’s efficiency. From using tools such as Google Maps, Google Earth, and social media, you can do many tasks right at your desk without having travel expenses. These tools save a great amount of time, too.
3. Using big data improves your pricing
Use a business intelligence tool to evaluate your finances, which can give you a clearer picture of where your business stands.
4. You can compete with big businesses
Using the same tools that big businesses do allows you to be on the same playing field. Your business becomes more sophisticated by taking advantage of tools that are available for your use.
5. Allows you to focus on local preferences
Small businesses should focus on the local environment they cater to. Big Data allows you to zoom in on your local client’s likes/dislikes and preferences even more. When your business gets to know your customer’s preferences combined with a personal touch, you’ll have an advantage over your competition.
6. Using big data helps you increase sales and loyalty
The digital footprints that we leave behind reveal a great deal of insight into our shopping preferences, beliefs, etc. This data allows businesses to tailor their products and services to exactly what the customer wants. A digital footprint is left behind when your customers are browsing online and posting to social media channels.
7. Using big data ensures you hire the right employees
Recruiting companies can scan candidate’s resumes and LinkedIn profiles for keywords that would match the job description. The hiring process is no longer based on what the candidate looks like on paper and how they are perceived in person.
How Businesses Can Analyze Big Data
In order to analyze big data, you need to first identify the issues that need solutions or answers. Then, attempt to identify the answer to your question and ask yourself, ‘how can I get the data to solve it?’ or ‘what can big data do for my business?’
Your big data solutions need to be user-friendly, match what you had in mind for pricing, and flexible enough to serve your business both now and in the future.
Research what the most reliable tool is for the problem you need to solve. For example, if you want to launch more effective promotions and marketing campaigns, you can use Canopy Labs, which predicts customer behavior and sales trends.
There are many tools out there that are inexpensive or even free that you can use. Google has user-friendly tools like Google Adwords and Google BigQuery. Administering a survey is simple and cheap using tools, such as SurveyMonkey and Doodle.
Don’t feel overwhelmed by all the data that’s out there. With the right tools, you can sift through the data to find what you need to start growing your business today!