There is no doubt that the amount of business we can now do online has grown beyond anyone’s expectations. However, with all that growth in terms of audience, customers, and profit margins, there has also been a huge increase in the data collected.

We have more insight than ever into the way business works, and what is or is not successful, and we have this data available almost immediately thanks to analytics. While merely having this information is an asset, knowing how to use big data analytics could be the key to really unlocking your business’ potential.

The following 5 tips can help you better understand your business, and make efficient improvements.

Address individuals

Big data allows you to really examine a customer’s buying habits and browsing history, which allows you to tailor ads that are aimed at them. Knowing what a person buys or looks for is key in terms of knowing what they’ll want in the future, and this is surprisingly simple to put into practice.

“Direct advertising can be easily accomplished by email campaigns, or showing items that will be specifically appealing to the individual in ads that appear across the web. This only requires a small investment, but can result in huge gains,” says Mary Walton, a system operator at Paper Fellows.

Adapt to the market

Big data includes the terms people have been searching for, so you can see when public interest in an item starts to increase or starts to wane and you can adjust your products and marketing accordingly. This is also a useful tool in terms of the short term future of your business and big data will also show you any upcoming trends and you can make sure you don’t miss out on an opportunity to make a lot of sales. This is a great way to predict your customers’ behavior and be sure that you’re offering what they want.

Adjust your prices and offers

When you know individual customers spending habits, you will know that you may not actually have to offer much of a discount for some customers – free shipping may be enough of an incentive, while others will be looking for a bargain.

“By using big data, you can target customers with different deals, so you don’t have to cut prices and offer large discounts to everyone in order to make sales. This individual approach can help you meet sales targets and move sale products without losing too much in profits,” says Amber Coburn, an ecommerce data analyst from Essayroo.

Improve internal affairs

While a lot of big data analytics results in changes regarding how you treat the customer, there’s a lot to be said for using the data to improve how your business is ran. Big data analytics help you make decisions based on reliable and solid facts, and can help you allocate resources or even staff to parts of the company where they’re really needed.

You have collated data about complaints, so you have the chance to quickly fix any regular problems, and also get ahead of your competitors by tracking small details such as expenses or delivery information. You may make small changes to modify your warehouse or your sales approach, but these small changes can provide a huge boost to your business.

As many customers who order online generally consider waiting around all day for a package to be the main downside, you can counter this by using your big data analytics to offer live tracking information and regular updates for features like delivery. These small details are great for improving customer loyalty.

Make informed predictions

There was a time when projections for profits, buying inventory, or establishing seasonal trends or surges was fancy guesswork. You could make estimates based off previous years, you could follow the last quarter, and you could try to keep track as you go.

“Big data analytics help you make informed decision based on current market trends, not previous, and create accurate predictions for the future of your business as a whole. This means less waste and better accountability to shareholders, who will encounter fewer surprises as a result of your accurate forecasts for the business,” notes Thomas Green, a digital marketer at Ukwritings.

Using big data in the above five ways is a great way to ensure that you utilize the data you have and stay one step ahead of trends, as well as one step ahead of your competitors.

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