The Singapore Institute of Technology and the Institute of Singapore Chartered Accountants recently conducted a study on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) which revealed that about 70% of the 500+ SMEs surveyed had not yet adopted data analytics, with many relying on spreadsheets and databases to store and use their data. This finding suggests a lack of awareness or understanding of data analytics and the benefits it can offer businesses. Additionally, of the 70% of SMEs not using data analytics, half of them reported they had no intention of doing so in the future. With the success of many SMEs, and their positive contributions to world economies, they could be missing out on achieving more growth and a better understanding of their business.
Meanwhile there are many companies who have made the switch to using advanced data analytics and commercial machine learning, a trend that could leave some SMEs in the dust. So how exactly can using data analytics benefit small businesses? Keep reading to learn more about this innovation and why your small business may want to leverage it for success.
How Can Data Analytics Help My Small Business?
While the idea of data may seem amorphous and fleeting, in reality, it’s an asset as tangible as hardware or brick and mortar headquarters. The core of every business’s activities lies in data; your small business is already data-centric, even if you don’t realize it yet. The key is collecting, storing, and analyzing data in such a way that it informs strategic decision-making and drives growth.
There are numerous benefits of using data analytics, but here are just a few:
Meeting goals. You already know how important it is to set goals for your business, and to review them regularly to ensure they’re still the right ones. But how do you know when you’ve achieved them? Data. And it’s not only the data that is important – it’s critical to understand what the data is telling you and to identify any patterns or trends. If your goal is to increase sales by 4% in Q3, then you’ll need to dig into all the sources of your sales to see if an increase has actually taken place. And if it hasn’t, to understand why not.
Improving processes. Businesses institute a lot of processes to get their work done, but sometimes these processes may be overly time-intensive or even unnecessary. Digging into the data that comes out of different teams in your organization can help you see where you could streamline or even eliminate tasks and processes. This information could also help improve processes that are working well or replicate them in other areas to get your business running as efficiently as possible.
Smarter decision-making. In becoming data-centric, data analysis flows throughout an organization and is connected to the different sources it’s coming from. One benefit of this approach is that it can help eliminate silos to improve communication throughout the organization for more informed decision-making. The critical part of data analysis is gleaning and understanding real-time value from the information so that a business can act quickly and deliver assessments to decision-makers. Additionally, data analytics can help an organization better understand what is or is not working across a variety of areas such as website performance, marketing, inventory management, and customer service.
Diving into data analytics can seem overwhelming, especially to a small business, but the payoff is well worth the initial learning curve. To stay competitive, all businesses should understand the benefits that can come from data insights.
But this is not an endeavor that business owners have to take on by themselves. There are firms who possess the unique expertise to help organizations set-up analytics dashboards and interpret and understand the information to gain meaningful insights.
If you’re looking to get started using data analytics for your small business, reach out to Gemini today. We are redefining data analytics and believe that data is a powerful storyteller. We can enable your business to easily and intuitively interact with data so people can learn faster and do their jobs better.