Big data has been around for quite some time now, and in the past, it’s fair to say that only huge companies had access to enough information to make it all worthwhile. Many small businesses have avoided getting into big data, thinking it’s for their more prominent rivals rather than themselves.
However, these days, when you bear in mind that almost every industry going is using data to find out more about their customers, it’s crucial for businesses of all kinds are using it to their advantage.
In today’s guide, we’re going to explore a few of the things you need to know about big data for your small business. Let’s take a closer look.
It’s Cheaper Than You Think
There is a perception that making the most of big data is an expensive process. And while it certainly can be pricey, it doesn’t have to be. There are many easy-to-use, budget-conscious tools out there that small businesses can take advantage of, and will provide you with an excellent return on investment, too. Don’t forget, one of your selling points as a small business is, in fact, your size. You are flexible, quick to adapt and enjoy closer customer engagement than a larger, faceless company. And using big data tools can help you become even more agile, enabling your business to develop insight and understanding of all your customer’s needs, wants and desires.
It Can Be Overwhelming
However, you should also bear in mind that big data can be incredibly complicated, and the more data you have at your disposal, the harder it is to master. In short, it can be daunting to spot patterns and make sense of everything, and you also have to bear in mind that different analytics will give you a different story. And that’s using sources on a singular basis – you also have to combine data from different places to form a clear picture. It might be worth outsourcing some of your analyzing work to experts, particularly in the early stages.
Things Are Changing
There is a lot of fear about big data from consumers and governments alike, namely due to personal information being processed by companies, and the security risks it can pose. Steps are being taken, which you will need to know. Take the new General Data Protection Regulation – GDRP – as an example. It’s a directive by the EU that means any company using data from an EU country will have to comply with reasonably tight data laws or face eye-watering fines. If you do start to use big data in the future, these kinds of directives are going to crop up a lot over the next few years or so.
However, despite the many problems with big data, ultimately, people use it because it works. If you want to improve your marketing strategies by a significant amount and stop taking shots in the dark, getting to grips with big data will be invaluable. Whether it’s to find out the best time to send an email campaign or to improve the visitor experience on your website, big data can tell you a heck of a lot about where your business is going right – and wrong.