– David Vince, Network Manager at GetApp, says:
Every day we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of big data. That’s a lot! A number of different sources contribute to this data including social media networks and search technology, for example.
If you’re wondering what ‘big data’ refers to you’re probably not alone. However to put it in simple terms (kind of), big data can be classified by four characteristics…
- Veracity – Ensuring the integrity of data which is collected from a number of sources
- Volume – Turning the huge amount of data into useful and meaningful information
- Variety – Turning data collected from different types of content, format and media into a customer persona
- Velocity – Responding across networks to provide service at great speed
By the way, the fact that they all start with the letter ‘V’ is just coincidence.
An example how this big data can be used is through analytics tools. With the ability to crunch data at speed they can make sense of huge amounts of information available through the internet and subsequently streamline a number of processes. This is extremely useful for businesses of all sizes, however there is a common misconception that big data is only useful for big businesses. This is not true!
Small businesses should realise and understand that big data can be just as useful for them.
Here are three examples of how big data can be useful for small businesses:
Scale your business: Big data can help employees understand the business more and what’s driving it in the right direction. With this information available internally you can expect more informed decisions which quickens decision making and therefore also speeds up the product cycle. This should lead to an increase in revenue and a decrease in cost.
Get to know your customer: With so many online interactions these days you can really get a good understanding of your customer. Every search term, tweet, Facebook post, etc. can really help you to understand consumer preferences and traits. Being able to identify demographics and what works best to convert each one can have huge benefits.
Implement strategy: Strategy is something you really don’t want to be guessing and you can only rely on intuition to a certain extent. Using big data allows you to strategically plan based on past successes. For example, you can plan your ad words strategy based on conversion rates for customers landing on site due to specific key words. Big data helps you achieve this.
There are many business apps that can help you achieve success using big data analysis. Click here to explore some examples.