One of the biggest changes in business since the digital revolution is easily the sheer amount of data that is available and easier to track than ever. The more informed our decisions, the more likely they are to be to our benefit. Are you sitting on data that could potentially make your business more productive, more visible, and more successful? These are some of the ways a data-based approach to running your business could seriously benefit you.
Getting your money’s worth from your team
One of the biggest expenses that any business has to contend with is the sheer cost of maintaining a team of professionals. If you’re spending that much money on them and giving them a good workplace then you want to make sure that you’re getting as much in return as you should be. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to shadow them and see absolutely everything that they’re doing. Instead, you should make it easier to track their productivity using things like key performance indicators. Not only can these show just how they’re doing, but it makes it easier to identify the specifics of why they might not be as productive as you like. The data doesn’t just show the problem, it helps you find the solution to it.
Underperforming employees aren’t the only reason that you might not be having as productive a work day as you would like. There are a lot of other reasons for work interruption and a lot of them are down to the tech that business is using. Whether it’s a network of computers or it’s a production line of machinery, all tech comes with a potential for downtime. But only by measuring the downtime for specific machines can you start to understand just how much time downtime might be costing you. That’s when you start to look into the greatest sources of downtime and how you can fix them to reclaim more of the working day.
Getting smarter with inventory
Time isn’t the only resource that your business has. Particularly if you’re in the business of creating products, your inventory of physical assets is just as important if not more so. You don’t want too much or too few. If you have too few, then it might slow down processes that require those assets, leading to a workflow bottleneck that effectively shuts down productivity. If you have too many, then you could be paying a lot more for storage costs than you need to and holding onto assets for much longer than you should be. You need a proper inventory tracking system, figuring out how much you need and any stressors on that figure so you can properly anticipate demand and order just the right amount.
The online presence
Most businesses have a website and that website is supposed to be a tool for helping to build the image of the business and converting customers. But it’s not enough to get it up there and simply assume that it’s doing its job. You should look behind the curtain to see the truth of it. Each page collects data on not only who visits it, but what links they’re clicking. If your pages aren’t leading visitors to other pages whether they can convert from a visitor to a customer, they’re not doing their job. That’s when you should look into adding more conversion rich content to those pages, such as calls-to-action and high-value propositions.
Of course, the brand of the business extends far beyond your own website and how it converts visitors, too. It reaches out as far as your marketing does. But it’s all too easy to feel like you’re sending those marketing campaigns out into space. You might not be able to feel the impact it makes or the kind of visibility it is truly enjoying. That’s why many businesses use tools like Chatmeter. These are the kinds of analytics tools that make it easy to see the reach of the business. Whether that’s looking at your social media, how your page ranks in search engine searches, listings for your business, and even how you compare to your competitors. Better understanding how your material performs in the market enables you to keep building on what works or find a new direction when your messaging needs it.
Figuring out what direction your business is going in
The success of your marketing tools and the efficiency of your business are just individual aspects of how well the business is doing. They’re symptoms, but they’re not the diagnosis. For that diagnosis, you need to be tracking the metrics that are truly relevant to the business as a whole. Tracking your revenue, the number of leads you generate within a point of time and profit per customer give you a clear idea of where you’re going. If they’re going up, you’re growing and it’s time to capitalize. If they’re going down, your business is stagnating and it’s time to rethink your strategy.
Getting your team on board
The data shouldn’t just be used to inform your own approach. You should use the same clear cut method of communicating for getting the rest of the team behind their goals as well. For instance, using metrics to track changes in the business can help you communicate why certain strategies are working and why more people need to follow them. Similarly, using organizational charts to look at workflow can help you break down business processes and the duties of individual employees. This way of breaking it down means you have a systemized approach to those tasks that even new employees can learn with very little effort on their end.
Tracking the right data can ensure your branding is getting attention and converting customers. It ensures your business is as efficient as possible with workflow and inventory management. It can even help you communicate the plans and processes of the business a lot more effectively with the rest of the team.