ImageAs part of the broader Big Data for the Little Guy project, Intuit surveyed 500 small business owners to learn more about how they view big data and its potential.  

The results are pretty interesting. Small business owners see the potential power of big data, but also realize there are costs and barriers associated with its use.  71% of the respondents noted potential barriers, with the top being:

  • 15% felt big data might be too costly
  • 14% said they didn't have the time for implementation
  • 10% said they didn't understand it
  • 9% said they don't have data
  • 8% said they lack the expertise required
  • 6% said they don't have the tools
  • 6% said it's too hard

The survey asked for their top reason, but I'm sure if they had been asked to list all the potential barriers most of these would be listed by most of the respondents.

But despite seeing barriers to the use of big data, 4 in 10 small business owners thought big data could useful to them.  When asked how, their top answers were:

  • 41% said it could increase their profitability
  • 38% said it could be used to personalize marketing
  • 37% said it could make their business more competitive

We were quite pleased to see these results. Small business owners are much more aware of big data and how it might be used to help them than we expected.

It reinforced our view that the democratization of big data is happening and small businesses will benefit from the big data revolution.