Skip main navigation

Data is everywhere

This video consider awareness and skills, costs and data availability
There’s no real excuse for businesses not to be collecting data, as I said almost all tourism businesses will have a website, of some description or another and there are basic free easy to use analytics packages like Google Analytics, or various other web analytics packages, which allow people to really start beginning to collect data. That data tends to be there for the businesses it’s just that with most businesses it lies dormant, the trick is really beginning to look into it, to understand exactly what you have and then to be able to begin to build answers to some of the problems that you have.
For smaller businesses there’s a lot of data held in your customer transactions and there’s a lot of data held, in how people engage with your content. Most of the free even the free to use mail out platforms, will give you insight into click-through rates and conversion rates and open rates and you can really start to play around with what they mean and how you could potentially adapt and adjust. I think probably one of the main barriers for people with data is, is a lack of knowledge and awareness of what it can do. It can sound quite intimidating because there are so many places where you can get data now.
So I think it’s, it’s really just focusing on how you’re going to use it for your organization. So it’s a skills training exercise it’s a, it’s a knowledge of raising awareness of what it is and and how you can use it and why you should be using it. I don’t, can’t think of any barriers that would stop an organization from collecting data. Regardless of what kind of website you have, or how you take bookings, there are still ways of gathering information, more time-consuming ways if it’s offline, but there are still ways of gathering information, that you can get from your customers, that you can then use to make decisions about about what your business is going to do.
Going with that end goal in mind it’s where you really need to start, if you were to go into thinking I want to improve everything about my business, you quite quickly get lost and get pulled in many different directions. Because of the amount of data, that even a small accommodation provider collects, it’s very easy to get steered in many different directions and then you find it really hard to get to the end goal because you’ve tried to cover five things at one time. So having that one goal in mind in keeping it very simple to start with and then going out and finding the data that you need to help you improve those, that angle.
Some of the costs around our developing data strategy, so far for us it’s been largely about time, we’re still trying to turn what has historically been a digital IT strategy into a data strategy. I think we’re quite and quite infant in our realization that we have this huge resource or our availability and our availability that we could with actually maximize and potentially even exploit in a commercial sense potentially and their time to even understand what their data is and how we might use it, and interpret it and where it’s stored and that’s that’s one of the larger costs.
yeah so challenges developing an effective data strategy, would be that your your data sources are not linked up, so it takes time to build your own sort of dashboard. So analyzing the inquiry data, the booking data, the booking software, your you know CRM system, they don’t do that analysis for you, the data is there but they don’t do the analysis and matching together different bits of data as well. So once you’ve built it that’s fine you can pull in more, but I guess the frustration for me is that, the accessibility of that data.
So we can’t get a live feed of that data out, or integrate it with Google Analytics and that is something that if we were much larger business you could probably justify creating something for that, smaller you can’t justify the cost of creating that great big system so you have to pick and choose.

In this video you will hear about the rationale behind establishing a data-driven culture and deliberates on some of the challenges you may encounter on the way.

While watching the video, think about the areas you think where data is held in your business and how you might start making sense of this data.

Can customer engagements such as enquiries and bookings hold useful data for your business? Do you collect such data to inform business decisions, and if so, how do you collect it and analyse it? Where do you think the main costs in developing a data strategy come from? What do you think the main challenges are in linking up data?

N.B. Specific data tools will be looked at in more detail in week 3 and particularly in week 4

This article is from the free online

Understanding Data in the Tourism Industry

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Reach your personal and professional goals

Unlock access to hundreds of expert online courses and degrees from top universities and educators to gain accredited qualifications and professional CV-building certificates.

Join over 18 million learners to launch, switch or build upon your career, all at your own pace, across a wide range of topic areas.

Start Learning now