How to Handle Big Data in a Small Business

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This is the age of big data. Businesses collect and use a huge amount of different information every day.

We handle some of these data unaware of their importance and potential value. Even though some operations you carry out every day might seem like routines, most of them contain some valuable data.

In the next few paragraphs, we’re going to identify the most important types of data and show some ways of handling them to gain business benefits.

Gathering data on business competition

Most modern businesses use social media, email newsletters, and other means of communication to stay in touch with their clients and rivals.

All these pieces of information can be applied to learn more about those parties. The inputs you collect that way need to be analyzed so you can draw conclusions that will improve your performance.

In line with that, follow your direct rivals on social media. You can follow their product launches, marketing campaigns, discounts, and special offers. By recognizing patterns that they use in these actions, you can predict their future operations and get ahead of them.

Learning more about your finances

Every business receives financial statements from the bank in which they get all the sent and received payments. If you want to establish a financially sustainable business, analyzing these reports is a good start.

Apart from that, you should go through the accounts payable and receivable related to your biggest clients every week. This will help you cover all your obligations on time and create a payment schedule for your receivables.

What’s more, you should inspect the expenditure at the end of every month. Using data such as bills and reports from utility companies is a practical way of identifying costs that can be reduced.

Of course, this is only one portion of big financial data in a small business. You should one or more financial software solutions to help you keep track of your financial assets and real estate properties.

Utilizing cloud storage

Thanks to the development of cloud services, small businesses don’t have to splurge money on in-house storage devices.

If your business has been in the game for a longer time, you probably have a certain amount of data stored on your business premises. For such businesses, it’s time to start moving data to the cloud.

On the one hand, you can accelerate your in-house business operations by uploading business documents to the cloud. As a result, your employees will be able to collaborate on your projects more efficiently. What’s more, it’s much easier to search, exchange, and accept data on the cloud, which means faster business collaboration altogether.

On the other hand, you’ll be able to reduce the number of devices you use in the office. Consequently, your overhead expenses will be lower, plus, you won’t have to buy any additional hard drives and similar devices.

Finally, you can repurpose some of the existing storage devices as backup solutions for more important documents kept in the cloud.

Once most of your big data is on the cloud, it will be easier for you to make use of them.

Analytical tools for better planning

Well-versed business owners know how important planning is for business success.

Analyzing and using big data is a starting point in making your business plans.

We’ve already mentioned the importance of data on your rivals’ online habits.

In addition to that, you should track what keywords are most commonly used by your competition to get more customers. Use keyword research tools to obtain these data. If you base your blog posts and website content on these findings, you’ll quickly outrank some of your rivals and become more visible on the Internet.

Also, finding out more about their followers and clients on social media is another valuable way of gathering and streamlining information on your rivals. Analyze what audiences they target, how these customers respond to your clients’ online posts, and bring your own strategy. If your offers overlap, use these data to attract some of their customers to your business.

On the other hand, these data can help you understand how to focus on services and products different from the ones offered on the market.

Various data-collecting tools will help you utilize these big data to improve your business chances and position on the market.

Improving your marketing campaigns

Big data can be applied in different ways to improve your in-house business parameters.

For starters, you should regularly analyze the performance of your website.

The designers working for a digital agency in Houston suggest that business owners analyze data on users’ behavior on the website. In line with that, you should check what sections they visit more often, where they click, what areas they leave fast and where they stay for a longer time. All these data can be used to adapt the existing content to meet your customers’ needs. By using these insights, you can change your marketing strategy and focus on items and services that have proven to be more popular among your audiences.

Analyzing how many people read your blog posts and share your social media posts will also generate some important information. This analysis will show you which of your actions are productive and which ones don’t cause any positive reactions from the public.

You can change the focus of your online campaigns based on these results. Consequently, you’ll stop investing in marketing efforts that don’t bring any success and concentrate on those productive ones.

Without a big-data analysis of your marketing efforts, you won’t know what direction to take to optimize your online recognizability.

 SMB-owners need to be aware that they have a vast amount of information at their disposal. From data on their business partners and their online presence to in-house financial and marketing features, there’s a lot to process and understand. Combining manual work and data-analyzing software tools is the right path to handle big data in a small business and draw conclusions for better performance in the future.