The growth of the e-commerce industry has sky-rocketed over the past decade, so much so that it’s expected to become the largest retail channel in the world by 2021.
That includes getting a tight rein on every scrap of data that’s available. The potential impact and insight e-commerce retailers can gain through a solid business intelligence strategy cannot be underestimated. By regularly mining data and reporting on analytics, companies can draw better insights, spot key trends, predict customer behavior and take more informed business decisions at every turn. It’s simply no longer an option for those looking to maximize revenue and growth.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution, of course; every strategy must be tailored to meet the specific needs of the business in question. With that in mind, here are three key ways that BI may be able to help an e-commerce retailer thrive online.
Spot shopping patterns
Whatever the nature of your e-commerce business, it’s always an advantage to fully understand the journey of an average customer from the moment they land on your site. Identifying popular product pages, spikes in demand over time, customer preferences bounce rates, obstacles to purchase and other key insights naturally allows businesses to spot key patterns in customer behavior.
Tracking tools have become far more accurate in recent years, which is good news for online retailers that aim to boost consumer engagement and conversion rates. It’s essential to make use of all available knowledge to better predict and optimize site journeys going forwards. Much like the layout of a physical shop on the high-street, an e-commerce business website must be constantly refined in line with what’s working – and what’s not.
Embed Your Analytics
Speed and simplicity are essential for any retailer looking to transform data into useful insights – and embedded analytics is the answer. This form of BI allows users to integrate their key everyday platforms and applications with easy-to-use reporting functions, making it easy to visualize data and draw insights within just a few clicks.
It takes a little more know-how to get up and running, but the long-term gains are invaluable. If you’re struggling to get an effective system sorted by yourself, expert BI providers like Sisense specialize in custom embedded analytics systems, helping to automate frequent tasks and scale the system as your sales and data sources grow. However, you look at it, linking key systems together and taking the legwork out of repetitive tasks frees up more time to focus on other important areas of the business.
Location, location, location
Search marketing has quickly become a prerequisite for many e-commerce businesses, particularly newer businesses that are looking to drive as much traffic to their site as possible. A key part of any PPC or SEO strategy is targeting potential customers by location, so it definitely pays to have a comprehensive understanding of which areas of the country (or indeed the planet) are more likely to purchase than others.
What you might not know is that all website traffic contains geographical data, most of which tends to go unused. It can be as broad as a country, or as specific as a GPS location. By plugging this data into a BI system, retailers can uncover new trends and home in on key target zones accordingly.