Microsoft’s global vice president for SMBs urged the technology industry not to cut small businesses out of big data.
While larger enterprises have had plenty of success with the internet of things (IoT) and big data tech, smaller firms can also take advantage of such technologies, Thomas Hansen wrote in a LinkedIn post.
“Big data is often considered to be the realm of big business, but small businesses are increasingly realising they can use the data at their disposal to make more intelligent business decisions,” he said.
“In 2015 many small businesses will learn how to put their data to work for them, using it to identify business opportunities, drive internal efficiencies and more thoroughly understand their customers.”
Big data, IoT and machine learning technology, along with predictive analytics, “are not just for big business anymore,” he added. “Small businesses will also see ways that increasingly intelligent technologies can work for them and ultimately make them more successful in 2015.”
These could be implemented by small business using while taking payments at a point-of-sale to increase opportunities and upsell certain products. As beacon technology comes into use, merchants can monitor the way customers navigate their stores and adjust advertising, product and till placement accordingly.
“People have been anticipating the day when virtually all electronics are connected to the web for years, and in 2015 the idea of IoT will become a tangible reality for businesses of all sizes,” he said. “Many small businesses may feel overwhelmed by IoT, but they can succeed by starting small with a few changes that can make a big impact.”
“The Internet of your Things, as we like to refer to it at Microsoft, is not about ripping and replacing technologies. It’s about leveraging what companies already have and adding to their existing systems so everything works better together.”