Data is a fixture in our daily lives. Let’s look at the obvious examples and think about how often you get a notification on your phone whether it be messages from friends or loved ones, likes and comments on your social media posts, news headlines or even your phone GPS letting you know of temporary road closure and changing routes automatically. 

Now let’s think about the online purchases you’ve made. How many of them were because of digital ads you’ve clicked, or recommendations sent to you in an email?

We all leave a larger digital footprint than we probably realise with the data we provide through contact information we share, purchases we make or even the websites we visit or types of video we watch online. The majority of this is trackable and that’s why we see content that is relevant and interests us online.

We’re currently living in the information age, shifting from an era of industrial production to an era based on the information and digital technologies. And this isn’t new by the way, but the development of new technologies and more efficient processes is accelerating at such a rate where businesses that fail to keep up and harness technology are at risk of collapse. 

There are such vast amounts of data readily available to us, SMEs and even micro-businesses can lead with data-driven decisions. And now, it’s not a choice whether businesses are data-driven. It’s a necessity.

More informed data-driven decisions don’t necessarily come from just having more data readily available. Businesses must be able to make sense of the data available to them. 

The amount of data that businesses collect and are exposed to is massive, so it’s a challenge to make sense of it all. But the thing that exacerbates this is the fact that most of the data businesses have access to is disconnected – the different data sources don’t “talk” to one another. 

Businesses that are able to bring fragments of data together so it is all congruent will identify trends and understand cause-and-effect clearly. They can know for certain which levers to pull to get the effect needed, for example, “if we allocate £X to a particular area of advertising we can expect to get X% to return”. There’s a big difference between knowing for certain and going with your gut or taking a “guestimate”. 

A business that is sitting on a ton of data will find it confusing and meaningless if they’re not able to make sense of it all, especially when it’s coming from different sources. Businesses that are able to compile large amounts of data on the different functions of the organisation and can derive meaningful insights that can spur action will put themselves in the best stead possible to grow.

As we’ve touched on, we’re living in a digital world. Most of our business processes are digital from our finances through accountancy apps, the way we store customer data in a CRM, to the digital presence most businesses have with a website and social media.

We can retrieve a lot of data from these tools and resources our businesses use. Social media platforms we use to promote our brands will give us data on the demographics and interests of our audience. We can analyse metrics from our website such as users, page views, how engaging our webpages are and how many sales our websites generate.

Many businesses will be taking a view of different pieces of data and making decisions based on what the data tells them, without even realising they are taking a data-driven attitude. 

See, being data-driven doesn’t need to be complex. But businesses must make sure that they’re drawing the right conclusions from accurate and up-to-date data. 

Data can be collected on all functions of an organisation. Being able to read the information correctly to take effective actions based on what the data is telling us will make each part of a business work more efficiently.

The trove of internal and external data our organisations are exposed to can have the ability to unlock key insights to help all of our functions perform better. 

For example, we can learn more about our customers, their needs, aspirations and desires. We can then show them how our products or services can help meet these. We can analyse what parts of our messaging resonates most with different segments of our audiences and deliver more personalised experiences.

We can analyse data such a churn rate to understand why our customers are leaving us and make changes to make them stay.

We can analyse our company finances, looking at historical data, to then shape future models and forecasts with predictive analytics.

We can even make our manufacturing more efficient by optimising machinery, shift patterns and processes based on data gathered from producing goods. 

The possibilities that a data-driven attitude bring to the business are infinite.

Data can even be used to reduce late payments!

The issues that businesses face due to late payments can be catastrophic with 50,000 businesses failing every year as a direct result of invoices not being paid on time. 

UK businesses are chasing £61 billion worth of unpaid invoices, an increase of 20% in just 12 months.

The thing is a lot of these problems with late invoices can be avoided with more effective credit management processes in place.

Know-it helps businesses make more informed credit decisions to mitigate credit risk and reduce late payments. 

Check-it allows businesses to credit check and monitor businesses from across the UK with real-time data from independent and reliable sources in just one click. Check-it brings credit and company information from Graydon, Companies House, The Gazette and Unsecured Credit Claims into one simple to use platform, allowing you to easily derive actionable insight from multiple data sources.

Previously, having access to this wealth of information and being able to distil the data to make data-driven decisions was reserved for huge corporations due to cost and resources involved. Not any longer…

You don’t need to be data-whizz to use Know-it, it’s so simple to use. Try Know-it for FREE today!