Information Overload: How to Understand Your Start-up’s Data


Knowledge is power. The more information you have about a certain subject, the more likely you are to understand and become an expert in it.

The same rule applies to business. Having a detailed breakdown of all the goings on in your start-up will put you in a position to succeed. The question is, how do we get that data and what can we use it for?

Here are a few vital pieces of insight every business should be utilising and the key to understanding and getting the most out of them.

Point of Sale data

Perhaps the most important of information of all is your bottom line. How much income are you receiving and how much expenditure are you making? Modern Point of Sale (POS) systems enable entrepreneurs to have an up-to-the-minute breakdown of exactly what products are selling, to who and when.

This kind of data is invaluable for businesses, and the beauty of it is that thanks to these modern systems it is so easy to understand, interpret and act on the information.

These systems integrate seamlessly with your ecommerce platform, enabling you to spend less time on set up and more time on taking that data and making informed inventory and logistical decisions.

Digital HR insight

As workforces grow it can become increasingly difficult to keep on top of individual performance. In these challenging economic times, it’s more important than ever to be able to pinpoint problem areas within your team.

Digital HR systems have the ability to give managers access to months of appraisal data, goal tracking progress and accreditations or complaints raised about employees. It’s a treasure trove of data but understanding what it can be used for is the key to bringing it all together.

For example, if a certain team is consistently behind on its goal tracking objectives or have expressed concerns about specific practices within their department, managers can identify these issues early and implement fixes, therefore boosting productivity and giving employees a boost that their concerns are being listened to.

Even if your start-up isn’t yet ready to employ a large workforce – futureproof by introducing a system in place to prevent growing pains from getting in the way of success. As soon as you have employees, you need some way to monitor performance.

Website and UX performance

Let’s say your marketing efforts have gone well and you have customers flocking to your site. You might find that visits are up but sales are still not what they should be. In which case, what’s the problem?

The answer lies somewhere within your analytics data. There may be one or several specific issues with your site architecture which is putting people off making those all-important purchases.

Getting this information is easy, as state of the art analytics data is available to all for free. However, using it in the correct way is another story.

Identifying high ‘bounce pages’ is one of the first priorities. These are pages where a visitor enters and then leaves your site without visiting anything else. Once you’ve done this, it’s time to check out the prominent ‘exit pages’. While similar to bounce pages, these are pages your customers leave from after previously navigating through the site.

The reason for finding these pages is to conduct an audit and find out what is turning customers off when they arrive at them. Are they loading incorrectly? Is the information incorrect? Could they be broken? Remedying these issues is a great way of keeping customers on site for longer and, therefore, increasing your chances of converting them into a sale.