Tweaking your business model with big data: 7 essential steps

Big data has become an essential tool for businesses and organizations over the last few years. Offering virtually endless possibilities, big data has been used to drive better sales, improve products, track business growth and make more informed business decisions.

More and more businesses are joining the big data bandwagon to improve their business model. Companies that are investing in big data analytics for future market strategies are already witnessing growths in profits. McKinsey research shows that organizations using big data are 23 times more likely to acquire customers.

A few years ago, big data was considered a tool for only large businesses and a select few industries. Today, big data is relevant for you no matter the industry vertical or sector you belong to. Even if you are a small to medium business, big analytics can help you garner better growth, more customers, competitive advantage and improved brand loyalty.

Here are some ways you can use big data to improve your business model.

#1 Chart up competitive prices

If you are offering a product or service, your customers are going to compare your prices with your competitors. If you offer the same quality of service but at a lower rate than the competition, you stand a better chance of attracting customers.

It is quite hard to manually check up on the pricing and offers of your competitors. This is where big data analytics come in handy. Simply input your competitors’ sites in the analytics software, define the metrics, and get it started. The reports from the software will help you chart up a market analysis. With this analysis, you will be in a better position to define prices that are likely to woo potential customers.

#2 Get real customer intelligence

Businesses today want to meet the present needs of the customers while planning for their future expectations. This comprises the customer experience which is fast becoming the key competitive differentiator.

Crafting a great customer experience requires foreseeing customer preferences in near-future and developing products or services accordingly. Customer intelligence is one of the most promising aspects of big data. Using big data, you can gather real data and insights on the trends, preferences, and habits of your customers. If you have a large share of long-term customers, for instance, you can use big data to determine how aging may affect their relationship with your business.

Personalized marketing and engagement are essential tools to generate data streams for customer intelligence. You can then use the insights from these streams to improve on your social media strategies and overall online presence.

#3 Streamline business operations

In today’s world, businesses operate on various levels. You may have a brick-and-mortar presence as well as an online store, a website and several social media pages. It can be hard to keep an eye on all aspects of your business operations, with data streaming in from so many sources. Big data analytics play a vital role by identifying pain-points in business operations and helping you predict problems in advance. Using the results from analytics, you can resolve the bottlenecks, improve overall efficiency and identify new opportunities across all levels of your business

#4 Get real-time results

Timely and informed decision making is the backbone of a successful business. You need the right data insights at the right time to achieve both. Big data helps you by bringing data from various sources right at your fingertips. From the user statistics on app usage to website visitors, purchasing trends to user feedback, you can use data in real-time to make better decisions.

A product or service that is seeing a spike in traffic, for instance, can be optimized in real-time for better visibility or results. Better still, you can pin other similar products at a more prominent position to attract the audience.

#5 Expand your business

Gone are the days when you had to get full-time employees to add workforce to your company. Today, you can hire contractors and add more team members with a few clicks. Business software today makes use of big data analytics to let you make real-time decisions about invoicing, job scheduling and more. Industries such as construction are increasingly relying on this form of data analytics to grow business, improve efficiency and create a more flexible business model.

#6 Use more data streams

Big data is ‘big’ for a reason – the more data you have, the more effective are the insights developed by the analytics tools. As a general rule, the more relevant data streams you have, the better. These streams can include social media pages, online website, eCommerce store, smartphone apps and more. You should try to add more data streams when possible. However, it is important to note that any data pouring into your big data repository must be relevant both to your business and your customers.

#7 Define and automate rules

One of the most helpful advantages of big data is the ability to automate many aspects of your business. These include many areas which until recently required direct human intervention. For instance, building and defining rules, and then implementing them is an important part of a business model. These rules may be applied in a physical space as well as virtually, in the software you use to manage workforce or other resources.

Big data helps you automate rule implementation and see the results. Based on these results, you can tweak the rules, develop better implementation strategies and improve on your results over time.

Creativity, forward-thinking and a problem-solving approach are vital to make the most of Big Data. No matter the size of your business or the industry or niche in which you work, big data promises to deliver endless possibilities. It depends on you as to how you can unlock these possibilities and garner rich dividends for your company. The tips provided above will give you a start in the right direction. But there are endless other ways you can utilize big data to improve your business model and see better success.

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