How Businesses Can Save Money and Generate More Profit with Cloud Computing and Big Data


Information is increasing like never before. Growing worldwide, it’s estimated that 90% of the world’s current data was generated in the last two years−a data explosion scattering substantial advantages and disadvantages in its wake.

Why? Well while exponential data creation and consumption is key to enhancing profits and minimizing spend, the sheer velocity of big data means companies are inundated and so they run out of practical storage solutions before they can analyse, process, or monetize their information.

But all is not lost in the data sea. Offering simple and cost-effective solutions (outlined below), cloud computing makes monetization and profit generation that much easier.

What is big data? Why is it important?

Cloud computing is increasing in significance due to its enabling role in big data analytics. Big data, put simply, is a collection of data sets too large or complex to process using traditional databases. And when we say ‘big’ we’re talking petabytes and even zetabytes (that’s 2 to the 70th power bytes) of growing information produced by the billions of devices connected to the internet. Big data indeed.

But why is this important for business? Where does the profit fit in? Well, the more a company knows about its customers, the better placed they are to serve them.

Improving the customer/company experience by enabling better customer relationships, big data is an informational facilitator allowing organizations to better anticipate and react to consumer demands. So if data is harnessed well, products and services can be tailored to suit consumer trends, and customer service as a whole can improve.

Every big data cloud has a valuable silver lining

Cloud-based solutions purchased from big data providers allow companies to access processing power and computer applications installed on remote networks. End-users can then access cloud-based applications via web browsers or mobile apps and, since the data is stored remotely, businesses can manage and monetize their data resources more effectively.

Even alone, away from big data analytics, cloud computing offers substantial financial opportunities and can save organizations money in several different aspects:

  • Hardware and software from file storage to new programs don’t need to use up space or be bought, meaning in-house computing can be put to more profitable use.
  • Cloud computing reduces server energy consumption, requiring less energy and lowering bills and emissions.
  • If data is stored in the cloud, budget necessities, such as server maintenance, become obsolete. This also reduces personnel costs as teams are no longer needed to backup, update, and manage servers.
  • Keeping everything in the cloud ensures information is widely accessible on multiple devices and is well protected against costly disaster and loss.

So before big data is even considered, the cloud for business holds substantial–company-wide−profitable advantages. But incorporate it as part of a big data analytics storage solution, and the benefits to profitability can be even greater.

How does this affect my profit margins?

The potential for increased profit margins is correlated to better business practices, and does not lie just with the customer. So when organisations combine big data management with cloud computing, they’re investing in a long-term and really very financially profitable arrangement.

Specifically, moving big data to the cloud can boost profits by:

  • Increasing storage through providing the ‘data warehousing’ facilities necessary for effective data analysis.
  • Making the advanced resources necessary for big data analysis more accessible and economical to manage. The majority of firms would be unable to process this in-house.
  • Ensuring security above that of single company firewalls, while insuring against the devastating costs of a data breach or loss of information.
  • Allowing companies to save time and focus on monetizing differentiated data, instead of the time and cost heavy task of managing big data in-house.
  • Allow companies to anticipate consumer trends so they can react by supplying in demand products and services in a timely manner.

Keeping computing costs low and enabling the freedom to utilize useful data rather than waste time and money simply collecting it, if used separately, cloud computing and big data can already offer substantial profit boosts. But when the two are used together as a convenient, versatile, automated and fast solution, profit generation opportunities are sky high.

Images: iStockphoto

About The Author

Alastair Kane is a freelance writer working for Acxiom, a Big Data Analytics and Data Monetisation Services Company.