What is Big Data Analytics?
Big data analytics uses advanced software and techniques to collect, analyze, and optimize large volumes of data. It is part of a larger strategy employed by organizations from numerous fields, who leverage the information at their disposal to make specific decisions and meet specific goals. The thinking behind this concept is that lots of information can be extremely valuable if unlocked with the right tools.
Big Data Analytics in Action
Perhaps the best way to understand how big data analytics works is to picture it in action. Let’s say you’re a small business looking for a way to boost your website conversions. In this case, you can use analytics to drill deep into your emails, social media interactions, and past purchases in search of patterns that might correlate with your goal. Maybe you find that your ideal customer is a no nonsense consumer who knows what they want in a product. These insights might translate to web design tweaks or other adjustments you need to make to create a better website experience and drive conversions.
Big data analytics handles both structured and unstructured data. Structured data is the name and address a database collects when someone submits the “Contact Us” form on your website. Unstructured data could be bits of the conversation you had with a customer on Twitter. Big data analytics takes all this information and centralizes it in a way that makes it easy to read, understand, and put into action.
Techniques in Big Data Analytics
Big data analytics relies on several tactics and techniques, many of which are specific to the underlying software platform and the practice itself. Predictive analytics, which aims to predict the actions of a certain customer or element, is an example of functionality you may find in a certain vendor solution. Data mining, which involves analyzing sets of data to identify trends or patterns, is among the core tactics used to transform data into useful information, better known in this field as intelligence.
The Future of Big Data Analytics
While the IT sector is booming as a whole, the tech field is propelled by various individual drivers. Big data analytics is one of the drivers currently leading the race. According to research by Wikibon, the market made $18.6 billion in 2013, approximately 3 percent more than it was projected to make in 2012. Additionally, Wikibon projected that the market is on pace to hit $50 billion by 2017. It will surely be amazing to see how this space evolves as more money, time, and energy is invested into the technology that drives it.