Big Data is changing the Face of eCommerce – Here’s How Retailers Are Adapting

December 5, 2014

2:43 pm

Success of an ecommerce site lies in the number of buyers or amount sold within a period of time. Because of the process involved in the selecting, ordering, and purchasing from their online stores, site owners need to track the behavior of visitors and potential buyers in order to understand what triggers them to performing certain actions on the site. The data trail left by users that were gathered from this intensive analytic process is referred to as big data.

This type of data contains a gamut of head-spinning numbers that is impossible to interpret or make sense of using convention means. For this, you will need third-party tools that allow you to clarify the massive data you’ve collected. Thankfully, with the ease of gathering big data and the tools made available at your disposal, it is possible for e-commerce site owners to use the advantages they see from here and achieve the success they clamor for.

With big data comes big advantages

Take it from Alibaba, China’s largest online retailer, which has made it a priority to improve its approach towards big data. Thanks to their dedication to extracting information from millions of buyers on their online store, peculiar statistics stand out that give them a better understanding of their customers. In particular, a segment of their biggest spenders on the site are women with big busts.

To collect even more data as part of their long-term plan to interpret what they’ve gathered into something useful in the future, Alibaba has created the world’s biggest online shopping dayThe Singles Day held on November 11 of every year. Aside from raking up money – Alibaba is reported to have been making 2.85 million transactions per minute during its peak and total sales surpassing Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined – the retailer is also raking in the big data that they can leverage soon for their desired purpose.

Only time will tell how Alibaba will turn the big data they’ve collected into something useful in the future. However, big data is not just used for coming up with marketing campaigns to target a particular segment of your audience. Oftentimes, as Postcode Anywhere founder Guy Mucklow brings up, big data reveals more about your site than anything else:

“Big Data, when used effectively, can directly drive improvements to the bottom line by streamlining the customer journey. Making a business agile enough to respond to signals and use information provided by customers to reduce ‘fall-off’ rates on their websites is essential.”

Big tools for big data

Among the countless tools used by e-commerce sites to gather big data, one of the most robust and comprehensive available in the market is Fanplayr. In its attempt to help drive more sales to your online store, Fanplayr allows you to track multiple campaigns to gain valuable information about the sales-cycle performance, customer profile analysis, and conversion funnel of your site.

The tool also provides you the option to segment site visitors and send out relevant real-time offers tailored to each segment to increase your chances of interacting with them from your online store and increasing order value since offers are so specifically targeted. From the data that will be gathered once these metrics have been set up, you should have a better understanding on how to optimize your marketing campaigns and improve the sales process and complete an order from your store.

On the other hand, if you want a tool that controls inventory and manages checkouts much faster, then POS software is an excellent option. Its responsive point-of-sale system provides a better experience for your customers, which means more chances of getting them to purchase from your site and boost your sales. The software also supports a customer loyalty program to consciously bring back buyers to purchase again and again from your store all backed by crucial data collected and made available via its CRM integration.

With the knowledge that you now have with big data in relation to an e-commerce site’s success, the advantage you hold over your competitors is just a matter of adapting with the times and making sense of the information you have in your hands.

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Drew Hendricks is a professional business and startup blogger that writes for a variety of sites including The Huffington Post, Forbes and Technorati. Drew has worked at a variety of different startups as well as large advertising agencies.