There’s a lot of buzz around big data these days. You could say it’s as though the business world overturned a treasure trove of useful information sitting right under its nose. For the most part, the think pieces and research devoted to the emerging technology concern big data’s value to organizations – their profits, bottom line and productivity. But big data can have a big impact on consumers too.
For the unfamiliar, big data refers to data stores defined by “the 3 Vs”: their volume (the sheer enormity of the data sets), variety (the diversity of data types – like text, video, PDFs and wearable tech info) and velocity (the rapidity with which the data can be stored and analyzed). These fast, gigantic and diversified reams of information are too much for typical data processors to handle. But thanks to advancements in AI, we’re now able to analyze them for actionable insights.
In this article, let’s explore how these insights can benefit consumers. Here’s how big data can help facilitate smarter consumer choices, more control and lower prices.
One of the finest examples of big data in action comes courtesy of the real estate industry – in particular, a real estate digital marketplace called Nobul.
Nobul leverages big data to bring power back to real estate consumers. The company’s proprietary AI-enabled algorithm combs through big data on real estate agents (location, reviews, fees, transaction histories, services, etc.) to offer consumers an overview of their choices and recommend relevant agents. It’s a near-total reversal of the way the industry used to operate – with agents obscuring their information and minimizing overlapping competition.
Speaking to Superb Crew, Nobul CEO Regan McGee shared what his big data can do for consumers. He explained, “Nobul brings choice, accountability and transparency to an industry that has – for decades – been widely regarded by homebuyers as opaque and challenging.”
Consumer goods companies routinely leverage big data to promote and personalize relevant products. (See the “You might also like” section of any e-commerce website). But the thing about commercial relevance is that it kicks both ways. It’s equally advantageous for consumers to leverage big data to determine personal relevance. Consumers can use big data to aggregate product reviews, price-compare for the best deals and zero in on the product they want.
Compare this to the old “department store model” of commerce, where a business corrals consumers to certain display fixtures in order to guide the buying process. With big data at the ready, consumers are in charge of the buying process.
As some economic experts point out, big data may be a net positive for consumers because it can help reduce the prices of goods. Essentially, big data optimizes and accelerates internal business processes, thereby reducing costs of production and transportation. Savvy businesses that adopt big data then turn around and pass those savings to the consumer in a bid to win customers from their competition.
It’s all part of a lifecycle that starts with big data. And it’s one of the ways technologies is helping disrupt industries.
These are just a few examples of how big data can benefit consumers. In each of these cases, big data gives consumers access to more choice, more control and more spending power.