How big data is changing the world?
Determining where to put new stores, making sure that your product is meeting consumer demands and keeping up with social media trends are all important parts of running a business. They are also the type of decisions that are made much easier thanks to big data.
‘Big data’ refers to large amounts of information that can be gathered and analyzed for patterns. It’s being used more in businesses today than ever before because it has proven to work.”It offers compelling evidence at global and local levels that investments in ‘big-data projects’ spark competitive advantage,” said Steve Killele, executive chairman of research group McKinsey Global Institute.
What makes big data effective is that the information could be gathered and analyzed in previously impossible ways. For example, as more people use credit cards they leave a digital trail of transactions. Credit card companies can gather all this information and analyze it to determine what types of sales there are for certain times of day, days of the week or even locations. In doing so they can make decisions about where to place new stores based on these trends.
This may seem like an obvious move but many companies don’t take advantage of such market research due to its cost in time and money. Now that this kind of analysis has become easier it means businesses don’t have to spend as much money on knowing what their customers want which can help them save in other areas.
Another way businesses are benefiting from big data is by using it to streamline their internal operations. This means they have more time and money to focus on what’s important to them such as the quality of their products. So in addition to telling a business where its niche markets are located or how much revenue each product line has generated, big data can also help find efficiencies within an organization if things aren’t running optimally.
In business,”big data” refers to very large data sets that may be analyzed for patterns and trends. This allows companies to identify certain consumer behavior, which is used to develop business strategies. It has been stated that”access to better information can help new businesses form, existing ones grow and every company improve.”
Mr. Killelea also says that business income from sales of big-data products is likely to grow at about the same rate as overall economic growth, according to McKinsey’s forecast. His research found the industry generated $50 billion in revenue last year but grew by 34%. The report predicts this figure will reach $130 billion by 2020 due to the expected global growth of private companies using big-data projects relative to public companies.
The Brookings Institution has stated that a widespread use of big data could stabilize the economy. The U.S. economy remains stagnant even though other nations are growing quickly, and this suggests that fundamental changes to the economic model might be needed.
With big-data analysis, government officials would be able to better predict where unemployment is occurring so they can devise specific policies for those areas and accelerate their recoveries. Big Data also gives government access to more real-time information about what’s happening within the economy.
For example, officials could see in advance if there is a business cycle dip coming; or perhaps policy makers will find new solutions by examining how consumers respond to various stimuli—such as raising interest rates—rather than ruling out such moves because of traditional forecast models.
Big-data analysis also has the potential to change management in other ways. For example, it might spur corporate strategy by showing which markets are growing and which ones are declining. It could also push management teams to find new business models that capitalize on these emerging trends—such as the recent growth of on-demand services such as Uber or Airbnb.
Impact on society
The World Economic Forum (WEF) mentions the positive impact of Big Data on society by providing economic growth and development, as well as improving customer service. In this context, the WEF reports a link between countries who do not use Big Data to its negative effects on both consumers and companies such as data breaches and identity theft.
According to the WEF, technologies like artificial intelligence could be used to improve personalization services while also increasing security for users of online services. TechTarget suggested that using technologies like big data analytics can help organizations spot trends within their business or industry—such as spotting potential fraud before it occurs. This is an opportunity for businesses to stop fraudulent behavior from happening instead of dealing with its consequences.
Big data’s impact on society is also seen through the growth of companies like Google, which uses big-data analysis to improve its search engine. As more consumers use services like this in their everyday lives, big-data analysis could help businesses increase sales and profits. On the flip side, big-data analysis can be used to target individuals with specific messages, whether those people are customers or not. For example, an organization can provide ads for products that a customer has previously purchased or searched for online without explicitly sharing information from one customer to another. This ability makes it easier for companies to sell targeted products just as long as they have consumer information in order to analyze trends among groups of consumers. It also leads indirectly into other areas such as Big Data’s effect on online privacy.
Many people are concerned about how the information that companies gather from them is being used or sold to other parties, and big data plays a role in sharing consumer information with others.
However, several cases where this promise has been broken have led many consumers to question whether their data is truly secure from companies selling their details to advertisers or hackers stealing their private information. These issues have contributed to a general distrust of businesses using big data to sell their products.
This distrust is reflected in other ways as well, such as the general skepticism of businesses collecting data on consumers without giving them any way to get a refund or avoid seeing these ads. According to CNBC, when Facebook changed its terms of service without offering refunds for this change, many people left the site and chose to switch services instead. This resistance to handing over personal details online has led some companies—such as AOL—to take extra steps in protecting user information from unwanted use by others.
Despite these efforts, several big-data users have faced lawsuits filed by consumers who were unhappy that their private information had been shared with marketers or even hackers who broke into database systems and obtained sensitive private information about those individuals.
What the future holds
Although big data has already changed the way businesses market to and communicate with consumers, experts believe that future trends will bring even more change.
In particular, there is growing interest in using big data analytics for social good . Organizations like the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation are already using this approach to understand public health issues and improve human welfare in developing countries. Other companies have used big data information to help local governments reduce crime by targeting areas where high rates of violent crimes were occurring. In these situations, officials used algorithms to analyze crime statistics over time and predict what time and place types they might happen next. This analysis helped law enforcement agencies increase their response speed and effectiveness while reducing costs at the same time. According to an article on Forbes , some big data experts believe that the use of big-data analysis in this way will help organizations understand more about environmental issues, food production and delivery systems, and healthcare quality and access in the future. In addition, because social media is often a source for big-data collection—and many people use it every day—its influence on those types of decisions could be even greater in the future.
Big data in modern times: bane or boon?
Despite its potentially negative effects on some areas, there are many benefits from big data’s increased power to provide information to businesses. These include enhanced customer service through better communication with customers and targeted advertising that leads to more sales.
Many businesses also find that using smart data helps them improve internal operations as well. For example, a website for big-data users—SmartData Collective—includes an article describing how a company used this technology to save money and improve customer service by improving pricing algorithms. According to experts, the most powerful benefits of big data come from combining multiple data sources.
For example, the Forbes article mentioned earlier explains that using information already available in the public domain along with information provided by big-data analytics can lead to even more useful predictions about human behavior. As further evidence of its potential, Stanford University researchers have been studying how Google search queries could predict influenza outbreaks years before they occurred .
Although there is still debate about some aspects of using big data to improve our lives or business models, many people agree that it will continue to change the world in significant ways. As big-data uses become more common, many people will also need to work on keeping their private information safer from others who may use it inappropriately for their own purposes. However, by using this technology properly, we can improve our ability to understand human behavior and solve problems in new and innovative ways.
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