How to ace business growth with Enterprise Analytics

Staying ahead of the curve has become equally important as the survival of the business itself. However, to drive unperturbed growth, B2C businesses must derive valuable insights from the humongous volume of data that they have and it becomes easy if businesses are quick to adopt a unified commerce approach. In retail, as we all understand knowing your customer is key, a robust Enterprise Analytics framework can unlock untapped insights from data. Personalization is the key aspect for retaining customers and acquiring new ones and as a retailer, you can’t personalize without analytics backing your move.

Another important aspect that we will need to understand is that almost all the applications in a retailer’s technology landscape have some form of in-built analytics. The catch here is that they work in silos within their sphere of influence and that’s why retailers need an enterprise analytics framework in place.

The Growth Strategy

For growth, a retailer can either be the first mover by delivering a new type of experience to customers, or they can deliver experiences that are better than competitors. It enables a retailer to grow rapidly across adjacent markets. The availability of a robust enterprise analytics framework, therefore, becomes a must-have for all retailers in order to provide these experiences.

If you consider Enterprise Analytics, think about its expenses as well. For example, hiring new engineers for designing a simple dashboard might not be a good option. Instead, you can buy a cost-effective Enterprise Analytics solution from a vendor.

In this blog, we shall understand when a company should go for building an Enterprise Analytics framework and when it should buy the solution from an external vendor.

 Accessibility and Time: The Build v/s Buy Dilemma

A company that builds its own Enterprise Analytics solution has the risk of untimely delivery. Similarly, building even a simple dashboard may require multiple resources and robust backend programming, thereby slowing down the entire process.

On the other hand, the risks of buying a solution from a vendor include lesser control and access to the solution, source code, bugs, and limited or no freedom of customizing the solution as per the customer’s needs.

Thus, it’s a trade-off between having complete control and spending more time on building the solution versus having limited control and accessibility, while being able to save time.

So far, we have only compared the Build and Buy from the perspective of accessibility and time. Let’s now have a quick look at the costs, which are involved in building and buying Enterprise Analytics Solution.

The Cost Involved: The Build v/s Buy Dilemma

The cost of building an enterprise analytics solution goes up with the team size. Whereas buying an existing solution has license fees that depend on the number of active users, services used such as automation, analytics, machine learning, cloud computing, and so on.

While buying a solution might look like it comes with a transparent and fixed cost structure, it also entails some hidden costs that come with building the solution such as the cost of implementation, cost of upgrading and reliability, which could be difficult to predict. Let us break this down for you:

There are a few hidden costs associated with buying the solution and these are:

  • The cost of implementation: While buying an enterprise analytics solution, in addition to licensing costs, there are often costs associated with implementing the same within the organization. It may be required to invest extra time to build your server, or to learn proprietary coding languages to model data.
  • Cost of upgrading: Data analytics is a field that is changing frequently. So, the solution which you bought today may not contain the features you need tomorrow. So, there is a risk of unknown upcoming costs.
  • Trust and reliability: While buying the solution from outside, the vendor you choose should be reliable and trustworthy, in order to prevent instances where the solution provided by the vendor gets discontinued or security concerns that may damage the reputation of your brand and may also lead to losing customers.

Just as there are hidden costs involved with buying an enterprise analytics solution, there are a few hidden costs associated with building the solution as well. Let us break this down for you:

  • Time to value: The time between the start of development and final production involves a cost. As a result, the cost of waiting till the solution is ready enhances the complexity as the functionality requirements become more.
  • Overhead costs: While building an Enterprise Analytics Solution, an organization spends a significant amount not only in terms of code changes but also overhead costs (i.e., storage and infrastructure).
  • Maintenance cost: Even after providing the solution a new fix might crop up in the future. To prevent your solution from regressing, it is required to invest in building a maintenance team.

 

Conclusion

Here is a summary of the points discussed which will help B2C businesses decide on the option that is best suited for their business.

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Krishnan Jayaraman