Business Intelligence can help you increase profits, streamline internal operations, capitalize on opportunities, and reposition your competitors. The problem is, many small business owners don’t know what business intelligence (BI) is, what BI Tools are designed to do, or how it can help them. This article will shed some light for you.
What Is BI?
Most organizations collect large amounts of information. Your customer files, accounting software, prospect files, and other systems contain information about your organization.
However, all of that information is trapped in systems designed to manage specific business functions. These systems are not designed to interact with each other.
Large enterprises have entire systems and teams of software developers with one main function. These teams gather data from all the other systems throughout the company. They generate dashboards, scorecards, data analytics, and visualizations about that collective information.
Small business owners usually do not have access to such a powerful decision-making tool. They may not even realize that such a possibility exists.
Imagine for a moment, as a small business owner, if you had a way to gather, filter, analyze, visualize, and interact with all that information. You could gain some important insights about your organization. You would see trends in data that you may not be aware of. You could explore opportunities. You could close gaps on weaknesses within your operation, and reposition the competition.
The process of analyzing historical and current data, exploring that information in a new way, and helping you reach intelligent business decisions is collectively defined as “business intelligence”.
BI Tools Are Usually Out of Reach
Most Business Intelligence Tools (BI Tools) are usually too expensive and out of reach for small businesses. They typically require expensive custom software, or an expensive data analyst on payroll.
How Small Businesses Can Use Business Intelligence (BI)
If you had access to a BI tool, these are some of the educated, informed, data-driven decisions that BI could assist you with:
- increase profits – Profits come from two sides of the equation. There are two ways to increase profits. You can either increase money coming into your organization, or you can stop money from going out. Analyzing your cashflow, customers, sales income can help you see places to be more profitable. You may also see wasteful spending in your organization that you may not otherwise be aware of.
- improve internal operations – product development, workflows, order fulfillment and customer treatment are just some of the operations you manage in your company. Data analysis and visualizations of the information in your tracking systems can shed light on process improvement opportunities.
- understand customer behavior – understanding the sales pipeline for new customers can help you find ways to help close gaps in your sales and marketing efforts. You may not have a good sense of purchase histories, average time between purchases, product return habits, and more. Exploring data can help you learn more about your customers, discover segments of customers you didn’t know existed, and develop ways to treat individual segments differently.
- assess competitors – market research and competitive analysis are always insightful. Learning about their offerings and finding gaps in the services they provide can help you find new niche markets.
- develop strategies to reach new markets – By understanding segments of customers and categorizing them into clusters, can help you discover which clusters are more profitable for your organization. Take that new knowledge and develop strategies to attract more customers that fit into those clusters.
- avoid risks – Every organization faces risks. Risk can not be eliminated. It can, however, be managed and reduced. By closely monitoring the results of test marketing and sales, you can spot trends in the data and make quicker decisions. This can help you avoid larger losses that you might incur if you didn’t have a way to analyze the results and effectiveness of marketing campaigns.
- capitalize on opportunities – By knowing your organization’s strengths, combined with new found knowledge of customer behavior & segments, there might be huge market opportunities staring you in the face. Without seeing the data and the trends, you could completely miss the opportunities. A good BI tool can help you discover those opportunities so you can capitalize on them before your competitors figure it out.
Why We Created BI4.us – Business Intelligence For All Of Us
A BI Tool For All Of Us
Considering everything we mentioned above, we know that small business owners need the power of BI to make informed decisions.
We also know that you normally couldn’t afford a custom BI solution.
We used our 30 years of corporate BI experience, combined that with experience running small businesses and supporting non-profit organizations, and discovered our new super power. We then leveraged that super power and invested the time and energy to create a flexible BI tool for small business owners and non-profit organizations. Now you have access to a powerful, flexible BI solution. You can gather, filter, analyze, visualize, and interact with all that information normally trapped in various business applications, like never before.
Now Business Intelligence Is Within Reach For Small Businesses!
We want every business that’s serious about improving their current situation to have access to the power of business intelligence.
Learn more about Business Intelligence. Discover how you can apply BI to your organization.
Schedule a demo now.
About Tom Argiro – Owner of HBG Consulting LLC and Executive Director of the North Phoenix Chamber of Commerce. Tom understands the pain points chamber leaders experience with membership engagement, retention, new member growth, and generating revenue outside of membership dues. Mr. Argiro comes to chamber leadership with a unique background as a software engineer for over 30 years in fortune 100 companies. Combining knowledge from both fields gives Mr. Argiro the ability to develop needed solutions for the problems chamber leaders face.