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Big data offers in-depth insight into back-to-school trends

Rachel Wheeler Archive
Big data is becoming a big deal for most companies. If they haven't already deployed big data strategies, they likely have them in the pipeline so they don't get left behind competitors. Tapping into the vast amounts of data that are circulating the web and being compiled by merchants' point-of-sale terminals can provide valuable insight into consumer behaviors and preferences that might not otherwise be obvious.

A recent report by RocketFuel revealed one such inaccuracy through its analysis of sales data regarding back-to-school shopping. Fathers are much more apt than mothers to confer with friends, gathering word-of-mouth reviews and reading social media posts, to make informed purchasing decisions, the study found. This was surprising, since many retailers assume mothers are most often influenced by these channels, and have developed their marketing strategies as such.

This isn't the only way big data is finding its way into classrooms, according to The Brookings Institution. In a recent report, it was suggested that students will receive better educations and teachers will experience reduced workloads as the result of big data implementation. Using data quality, analytics and mining, schools can receive feedback in real-time that demonstrates the effectiveness of assignments and score students' performances accordingly.