Although the saying is that money makes the world go round, data is quickly catching up to cash in terms of how important it is within businesses and society as a whole. For this reason, it is critical that your data is protected, understood, and effectively utilized. To help you achieve these goals, we’ve put together the following list of things all business owners need to understand about their data. Read on to ensure you’re working from a solid foundation.
Data Can Disappear
Possibly the most important thing to understand about data is that it can disappear in the blink of an eye. No matter how careful you are with your records, nothing is ever foolproof, and issues such as equipment failure, system errors, or even human mistakes can bring things crashing down very quickly. For this reason, it is vital that your business employs an enterprise backup and disaster recovery system that will recover your data if it is ever lost or corrupted.
Data Requires Protection
The next most important thing to know about your data is that it requires protection. This protection will come in different forms depending on the issues you are facing at any given time, but it is important to be prepared for any and all circumstances.
As a general rule, data protection means having good security (both physical and virtual) as well as virus protection software, solid IT protocols, and even business lawyers in some cases.
It Can Provide Valuable Insights
Managing your data isn’t all about protection – it’s also about analyzing it to find valuable insights for your business. By collecting and mapping out anonymized data, your company can find patterns and insights that would otherwise remain hidden. This information is incredibly valuable for future planning and can help you grow, make better use of your resources, and identify areas where pivoting may be necessary.
Fail to analyze your data and act on the findings, and you’ll fall behind competitors who do take these vital steps. Forge ahead with them, and you’ll find it easier to keep pace with changes in your industry.
It Can Help You Act More Responsibly
Another perk of analyzing your data is that you can use the information to help your company act more responsibly. For example, by tracking from the beginning of your supply chain through to order fulfillment, you’ll be able to identify areas where you can practice social procurement and provide more value to your customers and the local community. Not only does this help your business operate more ethically, but it can also help you save money and expand your customer base. So it’s certainly worth exploring.
There Are Many Ways to Interpret Data
Finally, it’s important to understand that there are many ways to interpret data. For example, a high bounce rate on an e-commerce site is a warning sign that you may need to improve your UX. A high bounce rate on a blog or landing page, however, is to be expected due to the nature of the content.
Data that relates to physical activities can also be interpreted in multiple ways. So it is always a good idea to ask a wide range of questions when analyzing data, looking for different patterns, and uncovering what they mean for your business.
Effective data management is vital to the success of your business. Hopefully, these five key insights will help, but it’s up to you to do the work and make the most of the data (and protections for it) that you have available.