Big data for Ecommerce Small Businesses

One way to challenge big brands is to leverage data.

Which data?

Well, yours.

Amazon, Nike, etc. All the big names are into "big data" since a few years now.Sounds complicated. Sounds something like you can achieve only with a few millions in the bank.It's not.

There are several ways big data pays off instantly - and turns into revenue. The 3 main ones are:

  • 1/ Inventory
  • 2/ Customer Segmentation
  • 3/ Shopping Experience

Inventory Management

Two main reasons:

  • When you're out of stock, you miss obviously revenue - and even more costly, you potentially miss a long lasting customer to competitors. Yikes.
  • You have too much stock? Well, you paid too much right now, it's bad for you cashflow, your stock sleeps in the warehouse - it costs you a lot of money. Yikes.

Big retailers are good at this. Because of their volume and history, they're good at predicting behaviours.

What can you do?

  • Track your store searches - it gives good indications on a category appeal & a product potential
  • Estimate your average daily sales of a product to calculate your stock runway & plan accordingly.

Shopify and Amazon offer good reports for this.

Customer Segmentation

The more data you can acquire about your customers, the better.

It's easy to send a survey and questions.

It's another deal to send regular surveys and accumulate knowledge out of all the datapoints you can get - and then use them in another channel.

So what should you do?

This one's tricky - because it depends a lot on your CRM. My rules of thumb:

  • It's better to manage more data than you can handle - prioritize getting more data (and storing it) over complexifying your data structure
    Why? Because you're not (yet) a big brand - your speed is your main asset, don't get stuck because it needs to be perfect. Get the data, understand it, use it. Don't try to plan how it's gonna be used before you have it.
  • Run monthly analysis and don't just rely on tools reports. "Getting in" the data is key and leads to insights you won't expect. Get a look at some detailed profiles and anwers - don't just look at the macro picture.
  • Quarterly, make sure your data structure make sense. It's painful to migrate an entire data structure because it had grown too fast.

Shopping Experience

What's one of DTC powers over retail, even now?

In retail, everyone will always see the same products, same price tag, same billboard.

Not online. The products you see, the reco, the headlines. Everything can be personalized & improved for conversions.

Here, there are two enterprise-level tool you can use FOR FREE.

  • Google Optimize: handle your AB tests and your personnalization
  • Microsoft Clarity: understand how your shopping experience is doing.

Hope this helps. I have been reading too much useless "big data for DTC" click bait articles and got frustrated.

Hope this blog post is not useless. Take care of yourself and I wish you can get 10 minutes for yourself and your love ones today ✨

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