Small Businesses Ready To Tackle Data, But Need Guidance

Most small businesses use analytics to make business decisions, find new customers, and nurture the ones they have, per a recent study by Constant Contact, a platform provider for multichannel marketing. 

About 73% of small business owners and marketers surveyed believe data can help them grow their business by finding new customers, but 25% admit to not knowing if they're using the correct tools.

Small businesses marketers want to better understand data, with 64% saying they need help learning the nuances of analyzing the correct data. Of the 19% of marketers who do not use data, 49% of that group say it's not a matter of access or expense, but rather not knowing where to begin -- or not having the time, a response chosen by 40%.

Small businesses are more likely to analyze easily accessible, activity-oriented data such as email. Some 83% use email marketing reports, while 64% use Web site analytics; 52%, social media analytics; 48%, sales trends; 44%, current customer data; and 43%, sales receipts.



The data provides a jumping off point to become more comfortable buying a variety of media. According to BIA/Kelsey, small business advertisers, which spend $25,000 or more annually on advertising and promotion, say 31.7% of their total sales in 2014 will come from promotions such as discount deals, daily deals, coupons, or similar discount offers, up from 22.9% in 2013.

Some 44.3% offer a customer loyalty program, per BIA/Kelsey, offering discounts or special promotions to frequent customers. Of those that do not offer a loyalty program, 21.5% report they are likely to add one in 2014, compared with 48.1% that do provide a rebate or credit as the reward, and another 29% offering points as the reward, per BIA/Kelsey.

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