What is Big Data?

February 23, 2015 by Andy Crow

What is Big Data?

Regardless of the size of your company, you’ve probably heard of Big Data. Technically speaking, Big Data is a reference to data sets too large and complex for companies to manage within their traditional IT systems. It is a fact that 90% of all the data ever recorded has been created in the past 2 years; however most of that information is discarded.

It’s this information that companies and websites use to analyze their customers. For example your supermarket loyalty card monitors what you buy and the offers sent to you are focused around your spending habits. Similarly Twitter or Facebook will register your activity and send (annoyingly) related adverts.

But a look past the technical jargon will reveal that big data is about opportunity. It is an opportunity to learn from your company's data in order to make smarter business decisions.

Whilst it may come as no surprise that large companies are taking advantage of the opportunity that Big Data affords, many people may not know that small businesses can do the same.

If you’re the owner of a small business, your ability to succeed in the face of larger competitors has probably been driven by your personal intuition and ability to provide a superior service. But Big Data is changing the business landscape.

Many of your competitors (large and small) are using big data to enhance product quality, improve marketing operations and further customer relationships. This newfound efficiency of your larger competitors can be a very real threat to the sustainability of your business.

But what if you could turn the tables on them?
 What if, as a small retailer, you could analyze the relationship between social-media conversations and buying trends to quickly capitalize on emerging sales opportunities?
Or what if, when launching a new online service, you were able to analyze your site's visitors and track how they move from page to page so as to understand what engages them, the things that turn them off and detect promotional and cross-selling opportunities?

Many think that Big Data analytics are too costly and complex for a small business to take on. Indeed, most of the analytics solutions on the market were built specifically for larger enterprises, making them costly and complex to implement. However, engines such as Google Analytics are affordable and cheap.

Fortunately, with Big Data now on the minds of everyone, new solutions are coming to the market each day and some have been created for the specific needs of smaller businesses.

Chorus Business Advisers can help you make the right choice for your business. Please call 0845 8671263 or email info@chorusadvisers.co.uk for more info.


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