Sometimes a company is doing all the right things when it comes to its data, but they just aren’t seeing results quickly enough to be effective. You may be playing by the analytics book and checking all the boxes, but perhaps you need to tweak your analytics game a bit.
If your business is slow and messy, you’ve got a Pig Pen business. Maybe your data was accurate and reliable but is now stale. Old data can collect a layer of dust, just like our dirty friend Pig Pen, from the Peanuts cartoon.
Snoopy, on the other hand, is always moving so fast that he doesn’t have time to let the dirt settle on him. So how can you make your analytics more joyful and speedier? Real-time analytics!
What is Real-Time Analytics?
Data analytics can do a lot to boost your business and have a positive impact on your revenue. It almost feels like a no-brainer, right? Who doesn’t love it when their business performs better?
And if you’re feeling a little over all the analytics lingo and sub-categories, we get that, too. Then, just when you’re finally getting a grasp of what analytics is and how you can use it, there’s this new term: real-time analytics. So what the heck is that?
Simply put, real-time analytics is data analytics, but faster. It’s data that is compiled as it comes in and can be delivered quickly. So when you employ real-time analytics, you get immediate data results with the most up-to-date metrics.
When we say fast, we mean fast. It’s estimated that 60% of your data has expired by the time you go to use it. Doesn’t that sort of feel like a big waste?
How to Collect Real-Time Data
There are two types of real-time analytics; one is on-demand data, while the other is a continuous flow.
The first is micro-batch processing. This method works with a defined start and finish, covering a specific period. The larger batches can take a hot minute to get the relevant information to you, but micro-batches grab smaller amounts of data. As with the larger sets, it has gone through the standard processing and integration, but the small batch size means the turnaround time is much quicker.
The other way to use real-time analytics is by streaming data. This constant flow of information is most helpful when monitoring or tracking a current or unfolding situation. It’s kind of like getting live, gossipy updates on your neighbor’s marital spats.
Streaming data just keeps endlessly going. It is possible to stream vast amounts of data.
How Can Real-Time Analytics Speed Up Your Business?
All right, here’s the real meat of the matter. Real-time analytics sounds cool and all, but you want to know how it can impact your business. That makes sense; you need to know what’s in it for you.
Real-time analytics is the best way to show you what is happening right now in your company; appearing live on stage…your data! When you have the most current numbers, you see your opportunities and problems in actual time. As a result, you always know just where your business stands.
Faster Decision Making
It’s never fun to feel pressured into making a snap decision, is it? That’s too much pressure, especially when your business is at stake!
Your organization doesn’t have the luxury of mulling things over, though. You’ve gotta keep up with the big dogs, and that means running fast. One study showed 64% of businesses that were questioned felt their real-time data was essential for good business decisions.
You can be more confident about your business decisions when you have good information in front of you. The data supports your choices. And when you’re faced with facts and figures, you can make your decisions more quickly because the data narrows down your options for you.
Heck, sometimes the metrics go as far as to spell it out for you, and there’s no question about what you need to do!
Detect Problems Quickly
When your numbers are coming in instantaneously, you’ll notice when they begin to indicate a change. If there’s a question about why that’s happening, you can track down the source immediately. In addition, it’s easier to pinpoint what’s happening when you are close to the root of the issue, instead of weeks or months later.
That also means you can give any problems that crop up your immediate attention. A delayed response could take longer to untangle so that you can be up and running, as usual, barely skipping a beat.
React Quickly to Abrupt Market Changes
Your customer’s wants and needs can change abruptly, or the world can suddenly change and interfere with your business. The weather, the economy, and even current events can conspire to throw a wrench into your everyday operations.
Any of these issues can affect demand for your company. Real-time analytics allows you to easily see the effect the outside world has on your revenue. It helps paint a quick picture of where you should respond, so your business doesn’t suffer. For example, your metrics can better inform you if you should cut back on production, reschedule events, or adjust pricing.
Increased Business Agility
Sometimes, your business may need to make a complete pivot. It can be helpful to know when to adjust your target goals and even where you need to modify them; does it apply to the entire company or just sections?
Implementing real-time analytics can empower parts of your company to alter its approach without needing to wait for formal approval from higher-ups. Instead, you can pre-approve fast changes when certain agreed-upon metrics are reached, triggering specific responses and processes.
Hyper-Focused Customer Service
52% of businesses indicated in one survey that analytics helped them understand their customers better. And when you get immediate information on your customers, their likes, and their habits, you can effectively tailor their total experience with you.
You can target them with distinct marketing strategies or personalized service; their entire experience can be custom designed just for them, turning you into the company of their dreams. In addition, 44% of organizations said they gained new customers and improved revenue once they began relying on customer analytics. Pretty impressive.
You know that businesses are constantly evolving. They can’t remain stagnant, or they’ll fall behind the competition. One way to gain an edge is by utilizing your real-time analytics to provide you with the most accurate and current report of the state of your organization.
As a result, you’ll benefit from impacts like faster decision-making, solving problems more quickly, making quick changes to the market, and enhancing your customer relationships. If your current analytics arrangement isn’t moving quickly enough, it’s time to speed things up.