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The New Approach to Customer Service: Big Data Analytics

When it comes to operating a successful business, customer service is often the key. The better service that a business can provide, the more success they can find. It is no longer enough to live by the idea that the customer is always right. It has become more important to figure out what the customer wants and make sure that it is provided for them.

Businesses have long tried to find a way to know what the customer is thinking. They have spent large amounts of money on systems that were designed to improve customer service. At times, these worked, but the world is constantly changing and the methods of providing good customer service needs to change with that. In order to do that in the business world today, it may be time for businesses to discover big data analytics. The successful businesses are the ones that understand this tool, know how to take advantage of it and know where to get help with it from.

What is Big Data Analytics

Businesses have more data about their customers available to them than ever before. They have data about the demographics of their customers, they have data about the marketplace, they are competing in and they have plenty of other data available to them. The problem that businesses have is not that they do not have enough data to improve the customer service they provide, but that they almost have too much information available. If they try to look at all of the data they have available to them, it can become confusing. Trying to use the data in raw form requires more time and effort than a business has and may not provide them with the information they need.

The idea of big data analytics is to take all of the information that is available for a business, record it, collate in and put into a format that is something the business can use. Instead of seeing a bunch of numbers, the business can see the data in a format that relates to their business. It can give them specifics about the people that are utilizing what the business has to offer, or it can tell them what markets are the right ones for the business. Instead of looking at a bunch of raw numbers that do not make much sense, a business will have information that they can put to use.

What Does It Do

Small businesses may wonder why they need to take advantage of big data analytics. They may think that they do not need to crunch the large amount of data because they do not have a big enough place in the market. This is not the case. Big data analytics can work for any sized business. It can help in four specific areas.

  • Competitiveness – Big data analytics can help a business react to their customers’ needs and changes in their market faster than the competitors. Being first has always been a key to success for any business.
  • Productivity – The use of analytics and the tools that are available allows a business to easily and quickly share information between employees. This reduces the amount of time that is wasted by employees trying to work together for a business.
  • Profit – Business that have utilized analytics have shown a marked increase in profits. This is due to meeting the needs of the customer better and by increasing the productivity of the employees.
  • Better Experiences for Customers – The use of analytics allows businesses to customize the experience for every customer. That personal attention is one of the best ways to build loyalty with customers.

Tools to Make It Work

In order to take advantage of big data analytics, the business needs to have the tools in place to make it work. The first key is to improve communication. These are the three tools that can help make this happen. 

  • Cloud-Based Phone Systems – many businesses are turning to cloud based phone systems. These systems allow a business to create a phone system that used to be only available to big businesses. The cloud based phone system allows for multiple forms of communication. They can be much more useful in collecting information from the callers when integrated with external tools like Microsoft Office 365 and Google Apps for Work. One of the biggest advantages of the Cloud phone with Office 365 integration is the ease of installation and start-up and the low cost. A business can start out with a basic system and continue to expand it. With a cloud based phone system, a business will be able to collect the information from the customers that will allow them to personalize the experience for each and every customer. That personal attention will help them build loyal customers that will help make the business more successful.
  • Storage in the Cloud – Because the goal of big data analytics is to collect as much data as possible, storing that data also needs to be considered. Thanks to cloud storage tools, businesses can easily store as much data as they want. The amount of storage they have in the cloud can be expanded as needed. Information in the cloud is easy to share among everyone in the business and is easy to format into the type of information that the business needs.
  • Tools for Analytics – The final part of big data analytics is turning the raw data into a format that a business can use to better serve their customers. It can help provide real time information about the products that the business is selling, the customers that are buying the products or the competition that the business is facing. Once a business has the data in the right format, they can make decisions to improve customer service and the business. It all happens faster thanks to the different types of software that can be found.

The idea of using big data analytics to improve customer service is not really that new. Big businesses have been doing this for a long time. The difference is that it is not only big businesses that are taking advantage of these tools anymore. Medium and small businesses have access to the systems and the tools that allow them to utilize all that big data analytics has to offer. It is starting to level the field and give small businesses the chance to take on the big businesses.

If you have any thoughts or ideas about big data analytics and its role both now and in the future, please feel free to share them with us.

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Tags: analytics, big, customer, data, service

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