The data analytics age for SMBs began in 1999 with the launch of browser-based CRM software. It has grown exponentially and is now an integral part of many small businesses. Here, we’ll discuss the role of Managed Analytics Services for Small Businesses and its future in the market.
Businesses need analytics to process raw data and derive meaningful insights, discover hidden patterns, uncover new trends, and make better decisions. Data analytics can streamline internal processes and maximize profitability without compromising quality. Managed analytics services have become popular with the increasing talent gap in organizations and the global market.
Small businesses cannot always afford to build a data analytics team from scratch and maintain it in the long term. Managed analytics services offer a cost-effective and reliable alternative to access actionable insights and survive market competition. According to a research report by Canalys, Almost 90% of business partners expected their revenue from managed services to grow in 2023. 56% were confident of over 10% growth in the year. Similarly, 35% of partners said they expected to grow by over 20%.
With such statistics, we can be assured that managed analytical solutions are here to stay. Let’s check out what the future holds for data analytics and small businesses.
According to a report by NewVantage Partners, 91.9% of businesses achieved measurable results through data and analytics in 2023. The global data analytics market is worth $307.52 billion and is estimated to reach $745.15 billion by 2030 with a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 13.5%.
Small businesses don’t have the same advantages as established brands and global giants. They need to work harder and smarter to make an impact in the market and attract customers. Data analytics can help create a level playing field and create more opportunities for small businesses to handle uncertainties. Managed analytics insights delivery gives a definite edge over competitors and fortifies the systems and processes in a small business. Additionally, it helps with the following:
A data-centric approach allows the business to make decisions based on reports derived from analyzing historical and present-time data. This strengthens the business position in the market and creates more awareness on multiple levels. The business will be aware of what customer wants, and the target audiences will know about the business’s existence.
Small businesses cannot afford loss due to a lack of transparency or clarity. From finances to market, distribution, and customer service, transparency can reduce the risk of miscommunication and misunderstandings within the organization. Data analytics for small businesses streamlines the workflow, making it easy to track every step of the process.
Customers are vital for the survival of a small business. Data analytics helps monitor the customer journey with the establishment and identify areas for improvement. It also provides insights about customer lifetime value so that the business can determine how much to spend on each customer.
Not having effective inventory management software can lead to many concerns like lack of stock during high demand, leftover stock due to no sales, mismatched orders, delays, and so on. Data analytics optimize the process and establish a clear system to streamline inventory. Businesses can also use analytics to predict market demand and act accordingly.
Customer behavior is a mystery to many brands. However, a business cannot rely on guesswork or historical data to determine what a customer wants. Data analytics effectively combines past and real-time data to provide more accurate insights into customer behavior patterns, thus increasing sales opportunities.
Analyzing business and market data can uncover many in-depth insights to understand how things stand in the present and what is likely to happen in the near future. Small businesses need to be proactive and grab opportunities before the established brands take over. This is possible by unlocking the power of data and business analytics.
The Analytics as a Service (AaaS) market is expected to touch $68.9 billion by 2028, as per a report by Imarci. Managed Analytics service providers will continue to have a vital role in helping small businesses adopt data analytics to better their offerings.
The following are considered some top trends for the future of managed analytics for small businesses:
As per Gartner’s report, cloud computing continues to be the top technology for businesses investing in data and analytics. Small businesses are relying more on cloud solutions to store data, run software, host applications, etc., instead of building an in-house data center that requires extensive maintenance. In fact, small businesses can also use multiple cloud setups to build a stronger data ecosystem.
Artificial intelligence is no longer limited to large enterprises. Small businesses can effectively leverage AI by investing in a data-centric model as opposed to model-centric or code-centric. It means more small businesses will adopt generative AI to create synthetic data for training the models and deriving better insights.
Edge AI gives real-time insights as the models analyze the data collected by IoT (Internet of Things) devices. This helps small businesses meet data privacy requirements and reduces the need for complex data storage systems.
According to a recent poll by Gartner, 2500+ executive leaders said the recent hype around ChatGPT prompted them to increase investments in artificial intelligence. Small businesses can take advantage of the advancements in AI by partnering with managed service providers.
Automation is already being used in many businesses at various levels. It will gain more prominence in the future as businesses cannot spend their resources manually processing large datasets. With cloud and embedded analytics offered by managed service providers, data automation will be an in-thing very soon. For example, augmented and real-time analytics require automation and AI technology.
Business organizations are moving from data warehouses to data lakehouses. A data lakehouse combines the benefits of a data warehouse and a data lake. It provides the necessary infrastructure to handle the increase in data over time and ways to manage it for deriving analytical insights. Data lakehouses will have a significant role in data governance. Similarly, data privacy and security will have more focus as businesses adopt measures to increase security levels and safeguard their data.
Natural Language Processing (NLP), deep learning networks, and automated machine learning (AutoML) will gain prominence. While the increase in NLP is attributed to the growing popularity of generative AI, AutoML will be used to find correlations in large datasets. However, it requires a robust data strategy to deliver the expected results.
Data visualization dashboards are useful in understanding the insights in a graphical format. Platforms like Power BI, Tableau, Qlik, etc., create engaging visualizations that can be customized. Advanced visualizations can be embedded on third-party websites and used to present complex data in appealing formats.
Business analytics is the backbone of business management as it streamlines processes, reduces unwanted expenses, optimizes resources, and increases productivity. From enhancing customer experience to improving employee satisfaction, it can provide countless benefits for an organization. In the future, the business analytics lifecycle will help with the following:
Gartner predicts that around 75% of companies will move from pilot projects to full-scale big data implementation by the end of 2024. This can increase data and analytics streaming by about 500%. The emerging trends in the analytics industry show that we are on the verge of disruption, where businesses will use analytical tools to handle global crises without adversely affecting their processes.
Emerging technologies like 5G, generative AI, and augmented analytics will have more prominence and help organizations better identify threats and opportunities. The analytical industry will continue to grow as more SMBs and large enterprises invest the advanced technology and data-centric models.
Data analytics will continue to transform small businesses and large establishments. Partnering with managed analytics companies will help create a comprehensive data strategy in all departments. Small businesses can invest in proven methods to get higher results while avoiding high-risk, low-return options.
Managed Analytics services are cost-effective, flexible, scalable, and agile. They can be customized to suit a business from any industry or niche. Small businesses can increase their growth opportunities by partnering with managed analytics service providers.
Fact checked by –
Akansha Rani ~ Content Creator & Copy Writer
Sunaina Meena ~ Digital Marketing Specialist