Big Data Analysis: Why is it critical for business success?2017-01-20T21:23:30.000Z 2017-01-20T21:23:30.000Z Business success is the product of wise decisions made based on analytical data. In order to benefit from this data, you need to analyze it. Let's talk about it.
Business success is the product of wise decisions made based on analytical data. These days, businesses certainly don’t lack data per se, but merely acquiring megabytes and gigabytes of information doesn’t do anything. You have to have proper processes and instruments in place to benefit from that information.
What types of data do businesses get?
Transaction data describes the results of a transaction and has three main components:
- Time (when did the operation take place)
- The numerical value (for example, how much did an item cost)
- Reference data (what was the transaction related to)
Typical areas where transaction data is present is finances (orders, payments), work activities, logistics (delivery records, travel, etc.), but there are many others as well.
Transaction data is especially critical for the e-commerce types of business, where you have to track what sells well and what doesn’t. Also, transaction data can help your marketing specialists understand what do certain types of users buy and what triggers can be beneficial.
Another important type of data online businesses get is website analytics. Thanks to such giants as Google Analytics, you can easily set it up and start receiving the information right away.
Web analytics includes four steps:
- Measuring the incoming data
- Collecting it in a specified location
- Analyzing it to see patterns
- Reporting on the results (whether in numerical or visual form)
There are also such tools as HotJar plugin that helps you see how the users behave on your website and what parts attract their attention.
Social network activity reports
To say that social media platforms are popular right now is to say nothing at all. As you can see from the graph below (thanks, Statista), back in 2010, less than a billion people have used social media. Nowadays, the current stats are well over 2.5 billion people and forecast to grow over 3 billion in 2021.
Most of the social networks offer analytical tools for business pages and profiles. For example, Facebook offers insights into the users’ demographics and behavior information which is very useful for social media marketing purposes.
If you’re looking for cross-channel analytics, there are tools like Sprout Social. It can show you either detailed information about a single platform or cumulative data across the platforms (a convenient feature for the companies that are active on more than one platform.)
The Google Analytics we’ve mentioned above can also be a great help in terms of analyzing your social media user engagement. We recommend using hashtags for more precise tagging (because you can easily separate various campaigns, etc.). Overall, even without hashtags, GA’s got much info to share.
Machine data captured by IoT sensors
Your users don’t have to be online to be a part of your business data intelligence. In case you’ve got a physical business or products, you can make use of the IoT sensors’ abilities.
Whether you’re trying to save nature by using IoT-enabled trash container sensors for proper waste management to taking care of the public healthcare and stop climate change, Internet-of-Things can help. Manufacturing businesses can also make sure everything is okay with the machinery.
Customers’ emails and phone calls
At HUSPI, we use HubSpot for managing our inbound leads. We love this tool because it offers many options to customize, optimize, and automate business processes.
When you have numerous clients and many team members working with these clients, you need a good database where you can easily track the activities and make sure that no client goes unattended.
A good business database should also offer an opportunity to build a professional relationship with the client to track and understand his/her project’s needs and requirements.
Another source of incoming business data is survey responses. While, most of the time, they aren’t considered big data per se, it’s crucial data that allows you to become even better and provide services that meet your clients’ expectations.
Besides reading those survey responses once they are submitted, you should have a cumulative statistics of what your customers and users think about a product or a service so that you can make it even better in the future.
Big Data Analytics tools
Considering the importance of analyzing data, many software companies offer various data analytics instruments. Some are basic - for small businesses who need to track the incoming information and understand what is going on, but without any specific features. Some are more complex and programmable, where you can set up several convenient analyzing features tailored specifically for your business needs.
There are four types of analytics:
- Descriptive analytics that answers the question of “What happened?” Google Analytics, in its most basic configuration, is such an instrument.
- Diagnostic analytics that tell you “How did it happen?‘
- Predictive analytics can tell you, “This is what might happen.”
- Prescriptive analytics that says, “Here’s what you should do about it.”
Each of these types of analytics uses different instruments, which include Hadoop, YARN, MapReduce, Spark, Hive, Pig, as well as NoSQL databases for data management, mining, processing, storing, and analyzing.
Business benefits of data analytics
There are many business benefits of data analytics, given they are set up correctly.
Reduce your costs. Big data technologies such as Hadoop and cloud-based analytics bring significant cost advantages when it comes to storing large amounts of data – plus they can identify more efficient ways of doing business.
Make your business decisions faster. With the information you glean from the data analytics reports, it is much easier to make business decisions. The time of reaction to the incoming data is also reduced because you can make the decisions faster (or, in the case with predictive and prescriptive analytics, you can act even before the event happens.)
Give your customers what they want. With the ability to know what your customers want and expect, the analytics give you the chance to proactively offer them what they are looking for and meet their needs.
As a result of all this, analytical tools give you a chance to
- earn more revenue
- enhance your marketing efforts
- simplify the customer experience, and
- improve operational efficiency
All this leads to competitive advantages over other companies in your field.
At HUSPI, we’ve got experts who are proficient with data analytics as well as database integration to streamline the business processes.