Big Data Tactics to Maximize Small Business Profit

The old approach to sales had you pitching to everyone that fogged a mirror. It’s ineffective and annoying. It also kills your morale. How many times can you get the phone slammed down on you before you feel like the floor of a taxi cab? Sure, you’ve grown thick skin, so you don’t mind it quite as much. Still, there must be a better way to spend your time. After all, what’s the profit on a sale you almost make? Smart use of Big Data helps business owners make better decisions and improve the bottom line.

Mining For Data

Few small businesses have the capability to successfully mine for data in a meaningful way.  If you want big data to work for you, that leaves you with two options: build your own data gathering tools in-house, or outsource the data mining to another company.

What are you up against? Professional data mining companies like TechLeads Online use sophisticated software programs to scour the web for contact information. Anything that’s freely available online is sent to a database to be sorted. But the program can do more than that. Oliver Deng, TechLeads Online chief strategy officer, realtes how the company’s program can pull data in from all public sources, use social listening techniques to aggregate that information, and then process it using machine-learning technology.

When it’s all said and done, the company is able to create targeted mailing lists for firms to use for direct marketing efforts, effectively, without being blacklisted for spamming.

Predicting Customer Habits

Big data can be harnessed to predict customer buying habits. Obviously, with this information, you can make better use of your marketing dollars, but how exactly would this work? For starters, data gathered over time can help you see when you make the most sales and when your company goes into a slump.

With this information, you can target your marketing efforts to take advantage of slow time, while maximizing gains during busy times of the year.

Perhaps there’s a boom during the summer – your sales explode. During the winter, sales drop off. What should you do? Bolster sales with additional revenue in the summer to make up for the slump in the winter. Your additional summer revenue could then be pumped into the winter budget to see if sales could be improved. If they can’t, you can focus all of your energy on summer marketing. Result? You spend your marketing dollars intelligently instead of haphazardly guessing as to when it’s a good time to increase ad spend.

Predicting Inventory

Big data has another important use in business: predicting your inventory needs. When you’re sending out direct marketing pieces, or increasing your ad spend on a pay-per-click platform, one of the things you need to be cognizant of is the inventory you have. Run out of that, and you’re going to end up with a serious customer service headache.

When you can see data about your supply line, when raw materials are at their cheapest, you can coordinate purchasing, as well as marketing, to coincide with “off-season” pricing on your own supplies and manufacturing. In some ways, this will dictate your marketing and sales cycles – especially if you sell perishable goods.

Predicting Price Trends

Price trends in your industry can help you solve sales slumps. If you experience a dip in sales during a particular time of the year, is it because it’s truly an “off-season” for the market or is it because your competition knows something you don’t? Perhaps everyone else is discounting merchandise and you’re becoming less competitive.

By looking at competitors’ price trends, you can view the entire industry and make changes to your marketing plan as needed – discounting goods to meet consumer demands and boosting profits at the same time.

About the Author

Kurt Smith has a background in marketing and he is a business consultant. He enjoys finding new methods to bring his clients closer to their business goals. Visit the NextDayLenses.com and see how this company’s website delivers on their business model.

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