When it comes to big data, you could be forgiven for thinking that it's only relevant for large corporations who deal with huge amounts of data on a daily basis. Those large companies also have numerous data sources and additionally have the time and money in place so they can develop effective big data strategies. While it is true that large businesses work with big data, it can also provide some unexpected benefits for some smaller companies. What if, instead of using your knowledge on how your industry behaves to shape your plans, you could make decisions based on hard data?
Get insights at a low cost
When it comes to big businesses, they will often have multiple data sources which house a lot of data. In order for them to effectively analyse all of their data, they will usually require dedicated technologies and platforms that are either on their premises or located in the cloud. In order to merely develop their platforms, they're looking at a huge bill which could run into the millions.
Small companies meanwhile, do not have to go to anywhere near those kinds of lengths to get fantastic insights that could prove to be hugely beneficial for the business. Small to medium sized companies can analyse their data in real time across multiple sources including social media, site conversions and data from sales with relative ease. All this data can help guide the decision-making of the business. If you use Google Analytics as an example, that is a completely free tool that enables a small business to track how visitors behave on the site and how much their visits generate. Outside of Google Analytics, there are plenty of solutions available for smaller companies at a minimal cost that will combine and analyse your data which will put you in a much more informed position when you're making plans for the future direction of the company.
Gain an advantage through collaboration
If you're the owner of a small business, big data gives you the power to work alongside some of your similarly sized competition, which will, in turn, help you compete against larger corporations. If you don't mind sharing some of your data, it can actually help you in the long run because you'll then have the power of combined analytics behind you. Having combined analytics gives you access to more market insights, which will allow your business to position itself better when it comes to approaching your customer. The more data you have at your disposal, the better understanding you have of what your customers want, that will allow you to adjust your products and offers when required in order to boost your profits.
As a small company, it's a good idea to put extra focus on your local environment, and with big data, you'll be able to look at the distinct preferences of your local customers much more. Once you know these preferences, you'll be able to add a personal touch that the customers are unlikely to find with a large competitor. Although big corporations have much more power and money, they are simply unable to offer the same level of customer service locally, so by knowing the preferences of local customers via big data, you'll be in a unique position to outshine the corporations with your customer service.