As you push your business into the heart of 2018, there’s something you need to know about big data: it’s an awfully big deal.

Firstly, what is it?

Big data is very much what it says on the tin: an enormous and endless chunk of collected raw data.  But when it is analysed smartly, businesses are able to boost efficiency, make better decisions, satisfy more customers, and make bigger profits.

And so as we speed even faster into the revolutionary era of big data, more and more businesses are taking full advantage of the benefits – and more and more businesses risk being left behind if they don’t start today.

The big benefits of data analytics

But without great data analytics, big data really is just a great big chunk of an awful lot of information – and about as useful as a stack of CDs reaching all the way up to the moon.  Only in how a business processes and uses that data is where the magic lies.

Done well, data analytics leads to:

1. Lower costs

Let’s start where the easy dollar signs hide: savings.

Traditionally, businesses look for savings like they’re plugging holes in a leaky boat.  But data analytics is not just filling in holes, but identifying which processes aren’t just losing money, but which ones are not succeeding well enough.

2. More opportunities

Every business wants to know their market, and then grow and dominate.  But to do that, you need to be a step ahead as you find new ways to expand and develop.

Data analytics shows a business where new opportunities for reaching new clients, increasing profits, and perfecting products or services may lie.

3. Better decisions

When new opportunities and potential pitfalls are clearly identified, managers make better and smarter business decisions.

And when something on the horizon is adopted or corrected quickly, it means time and money is saved, and problems are solved before they become a real hassle.

4. Competitive advantages

No matter the market, niche or industry, every business has competitors – and each is trying to out-do the next.

Data analytics allows businesses to shape, improve and perfect the processes and practices that makes one brand stand out from the other.  Looking at how customers spend their hard-earned money can lead to tiny tweaks that sends business your way.

The big benefits of location analytics

So while data analytics may be the ‘What?’ of what’s going on in your business, location analytics reveals the magic powers of ‘Where?’

Insight gained from geographical location is nothing new, as businesses have been collecting information about customers’ post codes, cities and even IP addresses for some time.

But advances like Carrier Wi-Fi allows businesses of all sorts to up their game by putting to work the huge benefits of location data analytics.

Don’t have yet location analytics in your business intelligence arsenal?  Here’s why you should:

1. It’s the future

A year ago, online giant Amazon bought Whole Foods for an eye-watering $14 billion.  Why?  The experts think one big reason was simply all that incredible data that came with the acquisition regarding regional customer habits.

So if location intelligence is worth billions to Amazon, surely it’s worth something to you, too.

2. It’s where your customers are

Yes, you want customers where you are.  But you also want to know where your customers are when they’re not at your place.

Location analytics closes that gap, allowing businesses to follow their customers all the way from an app click to a physical store and back again.

3. It makes you relevant

A proven way to get customers to spend is by advertising.  But the average consumer gets multiple thousands of marketing messages every single day – and they’re switching off in droves.

However, location analytics means you can keep your potential customers tuned in by marketing based on where they are – because they’re much less likely to switch off if what they’re getting is genuinely helpful.

4. It’s a powerful data point

When it comes to data analytics, adding location is taking it to the next level.

Imagine if you could put together heat maps of urban density, identify the routes taken by prospective customers, or know which demographics don’t like to buy when it’s raining?  With location analytics, it’s all possible – as is much, much more.

The location & data analytics revolution

Remember CDs?  Well, if you started stacking them up and kept going all the way to the moon – there’s even more data than that.  A lot more.

And the fact that businesses can collect it means that those who use it the best will make the most money – it’s that simple.  In fact, some business intelligence experts think the ways in which big data is used by businesses will ultimately become as revolutionary as was the internet – and perhaps even more so.