big data

4 Ways Big Data Can Help Small Businesses Grow

Latest posts by Charlene Glidden (see all)

Admit it: If you’re like many entrepreneurs, you’re likely still in the early stages of digital transformation. And you’re not alone. An SAP-sponsored survey of global small businesses found many of them aren’t quite as up-to-speed as larger companies when it comes to using big data in the workplace. 

That may be because smaller businesses tend to overestimate the potential challenges of adopting new technology. But there are lots of simple ways you can effectively gather, analyze and make sense of data you already have without spending big bucks.

1. Know your game plan

You’ve enticed visitors to your website: great. Now, what do you want them to do while they’re there? Your analytics goals should be based on the actions you want visitors to your site to take. Ask yourself questions such as, “Am I tempting visitors to purchase our product?” or Which specific content do I want them to download?”

Obviously, this goes beyond looking for hits on your site. Once you know what questions you want answered and the site pages you need to monitor, you’ll be better positioned to translate website visits into conversions, and shift your focus accordingly.



2. Boost collaboration

Today, cloud storage providers such as Amazon Cloud Services have grown exponentially in creating cloud and data storage for small businesses. Providing access to centralized files and data used to carry a hefty price tag for software subscriptions and consulting time.

But the recent development of affordable cloud services means you can open files on any computer anywhere in the world, even when you’re offline. Often you just need the internet and a small subscription fee to use these services.

Many subscriptions offer shared folders so you and your staff can work on presentations together without the version control and bandwidth issues of emailing versions back and forth.

3. Gain better customer knowledge

According to software experts SAS, one of the biggest advantages of incorporating big data into business operations is the ability to analyze historical information and use the insights gained to make informed decisions for the future quickly.

Recommendations from huge corporations with big budgets may seem daunting, but you don’t need expensive software to begin gathering data. It can start from an asset you already have: your website.

Google Analytics, Google’s free web-traffic-monitoring tool, provides all types of data about website visitors, using a multitude of metrics and traffic sources to help you learn helpful information about your site visitors.

Small businesses can also take advantage of public data sets and use these free tools to analyze them for change-driving insights. For example, a dog walking service could use social media to identify pockets of potential customers in their area. A fast-food app could provide valuable metrics such as how far away average customers live, how much they spend and what time of day they like to eat.

With this type of information, businesses can engage and learn about potential customers’ pain points and shopping habits more accurately. They also can start to learn why customers switch to competitors and even predict what they’ll buy next.


Sign Up: Receive the StartupNation newsletter!

4.  Work in real time

In many ways, big data insights are suited to startups in ways that don’t work for larger business. After all, even the brightest glimmers of insight are pointless if you’re not agile enough to act on them. Small businesses generally have the advantage of agility, making them perfectly suited to act on insights with speed.

You can use this type of machine learning in your own company to monitor the changing behaviors, interests and engagement of your customers and to tweak a campaign in real time. This can help you appeal more to certain users with quick actions such as sending a coupon or discount code of specific interest.

Big data analysis is redefining business, for both small and large organizations — but the first step is creating a structured plan. With proper planning and preparation, your insights will appear with more predictable regularity and enable you to compete with the big guns in the marketplace.

Total
5
Shares
Previous Article
holiday

The Golden Rules of Holiday Gift Giving on a Startup Budget

Next Article
exit

Tackling What's Next: Are You Ready to Exit Your Business?

Related Posts
monitors
Read More

How Monitors Deepen Your Employee Experience And Boost Results

In this ever-changing world, and through the rise of remote working, a good employee experience (EX) can come from many places. But Forrester’s research shows that the hallmark of a good employee experience is always the same — it empowers, enables, and inspires employees. Organizational awareness on the importance of EX in driving business results...
press release
Read More

How to Write a Press Release Editors Won’t Toss

You think your company news is a big deal but will an editor feel the same way?  Getting your press release published for free online in a newspaper or other media isn’t a sure thing. The decision to print or delete business news often pivots on the value placed on it by an editor or...
homepage
Read More

How to Ensure Your Homepage Helps Your Business Reach Its Goals

If you want your online business to flourish, you need to ensure you get your website’s homepage right. This is because it will provide the first impression people get of your brand, and you’ll need it to be a good one.  An excellent homepage will help your small business grow by facilitating the buyer’s journey,...
content
Read More

As You Scale Your Business, What Role Will Content Play?

There’s a startup renaissance going on right now, and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down any time soon. 2021 was a record year for U.S. venture capital, with investment nearly doubling year over year and first-time, early stage financings on the rise. But that doesn’t mean it’s getting any easier to start your own...