IBA, as the premier business brokerage firm in the Pacific Northwest, is firmly established as a respected professional service firm in the legal, accounting, banking, mergers & acquisitions, real estate, and financial planning communities. Periodically, we will post guest blogs from professionals with knowledge to share for the good of owners of privately held companies & family owned businesses. The following blog article has been provided by Suzie Wilson of Happier Home (www.happierhome.net):
7 Ways Business Owners Can Use Data to Grow Their Business
Data comes in many forms. Business data could include market analyses, consumer data, supply chain management, marketing data, and more. No matter what type of business you run, here are 7 ways you can improve your operations and prospects with data analytics.
- Improve Customer Service
Statistics show that acquiring a new customer can cost five times as much as retaining a customer. Even though gaining new customers is important, you should focus your efforts on making your current customers happy. Data can help you gain insight into your customers’ behavior and allow you to personalize their shopping experience. Anticipating their needs and providing them quality service will help foster a strong business-to-client relationship.
- Become More Competitive
Data can give you a competitive advantage. When you focus on optimizing your operations and looking for fresh sources of income, you can get the edge over your competitors. Market research will show you trends and help you detect opportunities before competitors do. Plus, competitor analysis will show you where your competitors are lacking, granting you opportunities to strive for innovation. You could also make yourself more attractive to potential employees. Analyze current trends to see what potential workers look for in a manager so that you can attract the right type of employee.
- Enhance Security
Unfortunately, small businesses are quite vulnerable to cyber attacks. Between phishing attacks and data mining, you can lose both information and credibility if you get attacked. Regular data can help you keep abreast of trending cyberattacks, point out potential areas of attack in your systems, and alert you about anomalies so that you can stop attacks before they start.
- Manage Your Money
Finances impact all parts of the business, and without sufficient revenue, your business won’t grow. Having a full perspective of your finances through financial analytics can ensure you understand all that goes into it: income, expenses, equipment, schedules and plans, profit margins, and more. When you settle on software for accounting, make sure it tracks your cash flow in detail and can produce clear balance sheet reports. You’ll want to know what your profits and losses are at any point. Better yet, you’ll want to analyze what goes into those numbers so you can maximize profits.
- Mitigate Losses
Maximizing profits also means minimizing losses. The right software can help you identify hidden expenses or products that are selling poorly. However, you can also use predictive analysis to easily overcome setbacks. Whether it’s to reshape marketing, assess risk, or prevent fraud, data can help ensure you don’t lose precious income.
- Improve Supply Chain Operations
Knowing each step in the supply chain is essential for any business owner who works with vendors and relies on supply. Proper analysis will help you navigate unusual situations, such as political unrest or industry-wide shutdowns. Use data to forecast demands and be aware of potential supply disruptions so that you’re prepared.
- Prepare for the Future
At its best, data is used to promote business growth. Whether you’re looking to expand or want to optimize your current operations, you’ll need to know how to effectively predict change in your industry, identify opportunities, and mitigate risks. At one point, you may even look to sell your business depending on the outlook. You’ll be able to weigh all your options using statistics.
Data is necessary for making the most of your operations. From consumer data to forecasted disruptions, you can start making well-informed decisions towards growing your business.
If you have questions relating to the content of this article, Suzie Wilson would welcome the opportunity to answer them. Ms. Wilson can be reached at (415) 201-0397 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
IBA, the Pacific Northwest’s premier business brokerage firm since 1975, is available as an information resource to the media, business brokerage, mergers & acquisitions, and real estate communities on subjects relevant to the purchase & sale of privately held companies and family owned businesses. IBA is recognized as one of the best business brokerage firms in the nation based on its long track record of successfully negotiating “win-win” business sale transactions in environments of full disclosure employing “best practices”.