The Downward Slide of Business Intelligence

In 2016, there was a lot of focus on emerging BI trends and the growth of Business Analytics. In 2017, things look a little different. While there are a number of Business Intelligence trends that are stable, the big picture is not as clear as we may have thought. In fact, there seems to be a definite downward slide in BI. Between 2016 and 2017, trends in BI markets have not shown any significant gains. A recent poll which asked 2800 vendors, consultants and users for their opinions on the importance of BI Trends, came up with three main areas of focus; these being data quality management, self-service BI and data recovery.

At the same time, there were a lot of BI trends that showed a huge downward swing. Once the Big Data euphoria had worn off, businesses started to regroup and look at BI in a realistic light. As such, there were a significant number of trends that took a hit in 2017 namely Mobile BI, Visual Design Standards, Real-time Analytics, Agile BI Development and MQ management. We have seen over the past few months that user dissatisfaction of BI continues to plague many corporations. The main concern businesses have is the fact that there is simply too much data, as well as a delay in the production of information. We can add to the list a perception of low quality information as well as a lack of focused or relevant data.

The Pros and Cons of BI

Going back to the basics, Business Intelligence is simply an application to analyse raw data, and when used correctly by developers and analysts it is very useful. But it doesn’t tell businesses how to use data or how relevant data may be. While there are a number of pros to BI like the ability to visualise data quicker, track KPI’s and access information whenever you want, the challenge lies in implementing and processing the information in a way that is not only usable, but more importantly instantly beneficial. This is where the biggest problem lies. Accessing the right information, making it relevant and making it useful.

The cons of BI are vast and can be seen in many mid-level and major corporations. For starters, the cost of BI Management is an issue that has not yet been resolved. Even for companies that use cloud-based and mobile solutions, there are still only a handful of vendors that in the BI industry. If we consider the overages, even a basic package can work out more costly than expected.

Strategic Usage of Big Data

In some instances, multiple BI applications may be needed. In order to maximise Big Data, companies would need to invest in an entire umbrella of services to make BI a more integrated system. Then there are the issues of security, regulations and understanding of BI to consider. Looking at recent statistics we can see that more than 70 per cent of companies claim to be data driven. However, only around 27% of these companies have a clearly defined BI strategy. Those who are using BI are finding that at least 74 per cent are having difficulties actually defining business requirement for analytics.

If Big Data and Business Analytics are to see any momentum toward the end of 2017, there needs to be a greater understanding of the basic functions of BI. Businesses need to go back to the beginning and calculate the value of the data from the start. Companies that are finding problems too big to fix or correction process to difficult, must focus on developing a company-wide data governance strategy. If current issues persist, there is a danger that BI will lose its efficacy all together and be seen as white elephant for major corporations.

Synergo Group on Clutch

Providing custom software development since 2005, here at Synergo Group we offer quality services to solve the business needs of our customers. The Synergo Group has built a team of friendly, communicative, and reliable individuals with expertise in technologies such as Java, Python, PHP Frameworks and CMS, Business Intelligence, and Web and Mobile Application development.

At Synergo Group, we partner with our clients and align ourselves with their goals to form a synergized unit. These partnerships have led to quality results for our clients and satisfaction on their end.

Our work has been recognized by Clutch, a ratings and reviews site based in Washington, DC. Clutch’s research analyzes thousands of technology and marketing companies worldwide. For each firm on their site, they gather feedback from clients to get an idea of the services they provided them.

We are honored that some of our customers have taken the time to discuss their experience working with our company. Here are some highlights from our client reviews on Clutch:

“Synergo is extremely focused and keeps the same developer on a project which greatly increases productivity” – Senior Product Manager from a Cloud Based Medical Management Company

“You’ll see Cristi fighting for your business harder than you do. Amazingly, this is true.” – Co-founder of a Classified Ads Startup

Another client, a Legal Innovation Startup, says “The quality of the work is excellent. Synergo Group has been flexible in allowing me to make changes halfway through.”

To find out more about what our clients have to say about our work, visit our profile on Clutch or find us on the Canadian App Developers directory.

How Big Data Is Changing Business Marketing

How Big Data is Changing the World of Marketing

Recently there has been a lot of buzz around Big Data and how it can be used to revolutionise small businesses, especially in the world of marketing. Despite the constant chatter on social media channels, few businesses actually understand the implications of Big Data and what it can really do in a marketing context. To better understand Big Data in the marketing sector, Synergo has taken a look at why any businesses, regardless of their size, should be taking a serious look at Big Data and consider using it as a powerful tool for social media and marketing.

Insight into Customer Preferences

Marketing is all about creating targeted advertising for a specific customer base and understanding your target base is the first step. In the past, companies had to create their own market data, which was then used to formulate targeted advertising. With Big Data, streamlined data platforms can produce a massive amount of reverent data in a matter of minutes.  Having this power means that as a business, you can create advertising that is highly concentrated and more effective than ever before.

Campaign Certainty

Before the arrival of Big Data, marketers had to rely on intuition, market trends, fluctuations and a bit of luck before rolling out a marketing campaign. By in large, it was fairly difficult to judge just how effective a marketing campaign would be. In many cases, the success of the marketing campaign was directly tied to financial consequences, which meant the risks were huge. Today, Big Data can be used for campaign simulations. Businesses can run simulated tests in a virtual marketplace to gauge the response of the advertising campaign. This means that small changes and performance tweaks can be put into place, before going live.

The Big Picture

One of the most impressive aspects of Big Data analysis is how Big Data can provide deep insight into the purchasing and browsing history of a specific target market. This gives marketers essential information as to what their customers are looking for, what they want, what price they want it at and, how they want it delivered, and how they prefer to pay for their goods or services. This not only applies to the current time-scale, but also going back weeks or months. With this information, businesses can actually evolve with their customer base, learn consumer patterns and create apps, products and marketing strategies that are highly focused and effective.

A Leg Up for Small Businesses

It is a well-known fact that from a marketing standpoint, larger businesses always had the upper hand. This was mainly due to the fact that bigger businesses were able to put more resources into the production of data and market research. Big Data has changed all that and essentially levelled the playing field. Now, even the smallest of businesses can compete with major corporations with access to the same market trends and customer data.

Improving Marketing Communications

Modern technology and social media means that the world of marketing is growing and changing at a rapid pace. Social media marketing in particular has been proven to be a powerful medium, and is just one of many ways in which communications between business and consumers has shifted towards the social vantage. Using Big Data for insight into the preferences of consumer communications is essential whether looking at email, video or social media. This information has a huge impact on how a company chooses to communicate with their target audience.

Looking to the Future

Big Data is an amazingly powerful tool for a business of any size. The requirements for the use of such data platforms are simply that a business would want to look for a more effective way of marketing. In turn this would significantly reduce costs, streamline analysis, communications, advertising and ultimately production. Essentially, Big Data makes the whole marketing process faster and easier. What business would not want to get on board?

A Look at The Internet of Things – Synergo Group

Understanding the Internet of Things

 Smart cars, smart homes, smart TV’s, all of these terms have become commonplace recently and in the future, they are going to become even more so. The question on many people’s lips, however, is what makes these things smart and what are they?

In a nutshell, smart devices, cars and systems are all part of what is termed the ‘Internet of Things’, or IoT. At a base level, the Internet of Things refers to the connection between everyday objects, the Internet and one another. The goal of anything connected to the IoT is to provide a more efficient – or a smarter- experience.

Technologically speaking, the IoT is relatively new and for the average consumer it may seem somewhat complex. As debates swirl around privacy, security and standardization an increasing number of companies and big brands are climbing aboard the IoT bandwagon and releasing products for the real world.

To better understand the IoT Synergo have taken a look at how it works, the products it is associated with, and the challenges that are being faced.

An Overview of the IoT

 The Internet of Things has been described as a constellation of inanimate objects that are designed to include built-in wireless connectivity so they can be controlled, monitored and linked over the Internet by a mobile app. These inanimate objects span numerous categories, from light bulbs to wearables, to home appliances and even cars. The IoT is also being utilised by other verticals, including the health care and medical industries, and in transportation systems, as it is hugely versatile.

The point of the IoT is to streamline users everyday lives and to make them more efficient, use less energy, potentially save money, or save time. A great example of this is a smart home device that controls a thermostat. If the homeowner leaves and forgets to turn down the heat, they can do so remotely, thus saving a full day’s costs. Additionally, if they want a warm house when they return, they can turn the heat back on an hour in advance.

An Ever- Broadening Scope

As the Internet of Things expands, the applications for this type of technology are almost limitless, and could be applied in all areas of our daily lives. From being able to turn the heat on and off to turning on lights when you are away from home, activating security systems, turning on the oven or locking the car, the IoT has numerous advantages.

The Internet of Things is also being used by cities to keep tabs on things like the number of parking spaces available in specific areas, the air and water quality and the volume of traffic, and there is plenty of opportunity for growth here too.

The Technical Side of the IoT

The Internet of Things may sound complex, but if you have a basic technological knowledge it’s quite easy to comprehend. The underlying technology makes use of various wireless radios that allow devices to connect to the Internet and one another, such as Wi-Fi, RFID, NFC, and Bluetooth.

Then there are the ‘things’, such as motion sensors, light bulbs, locks or TV’s, and in some cases, there is also a central hub that allows devices to connect to one another. Lastly, there are the cloud services that enable the collection of data so that it can be analyzed, and allows for users to act using an app. Essentially the IoT has 3 components, the communication center, the device and the result.

The Shape of Things to Come

At present, there are a huge number of companies working on IoT projects, with many trying to create standardization so that all devices can talk to one another, across the board.  LG, Samsung, Apple, Philips and Google are just a few of the big names who are working on connected devices, and Gartner estimates that by the year 2020, 25 billion connected devices will be in use.

The growth potential for the Internet of Things is almost unprecedented. Not since the launch of the first mobile phones has there been so much scope for changing the way we live in a technologically enhanced fashion.

Synergo Group: Leading the Industry in 2017

Leading our industry and showing customers what we can achieve by letting technical creatives do what they do best has been our focus since our very first day in business. Our philosophy has always been that hard work and creativity will produce results which everyone can be proud of.

We are delighted to announce that the professionalism and ingenuity of our team has led to us being recognized as the #1 App Development company to look out for on 2017. With the latest rankings just released by designdrizzle.com, we couldn’t be prouder of this brilliant recognition for our entire team.

Our goal now is to continue to push the boundaries of how we can pair technical skill with creativity so that we can strengthen our position as a leading figure in the industry.

With a firm commitment to success, and a culture of putting the customer at the center of everything we do, we know that the next 12 months are going to be the most exciting yet at Synergo Group.

Synergo Group: A Top 5 iPhone App Development Company

Create something that you are proud to put your name to. That’s what we think about when we get to work each morning.

At Synergo Group we put the needs of the customer and the experience of the end user at the forefront of our minds when we approach every new project. Our people-orientated approach allows us to keep sight of the big picture whilst staying abreast of all the technical details which allow a project to function.

This approach is fast gaining recognition within the industry, and we are proud to announce that we have recently been highlighted as a Top 5 iPhone App Development company in the latest websurfmedia.com rankings.

Entering at #4 not only gives us some fantastic positive feedback from within the industry, it also provides the ideal motivation to really push the boundaries over the coming 12 months.

With the philosophy of serving the customer by creating something we are proud to put our name to guiding everything we do, we are sure that the next 12 month cycle is going to be the most productive and creative yet at Synergo Group.

Synergo Group: A Top 5 iPhone Developer in 2017

When it comes to creating a product that users can rely on, there is nothing more important than starting at what they would like to use and working backwards. This approach not only serves every single one of our customers well, it has also recently attracted a swathe of media attention.

We are proud to announce that as a result of a concerted team effort, Synergo Group has been recognized as a Top 5 iPhone App Developer for 2017.

Coming in at a highly respectable 4th place in the designdrizzle.com rankings is something that we are very proud of as a company. Recognition from within the industry is the highest accolade that our team can receive, and it all stems from the customer-focused approach we bring to our work.

We want our ranking to serve as a springboard to reach even higher heights over the next 12 months as we continue to seek out the best and brightest technical professional in our never ending quest to provide excellence for the end user.

Synergo Group: Hybrid Cloud Analytics – What we learnt at Qlik Connections Worldwide User Conference

Synergo Group - QLIK Sense | Business Intelligence

The Qlik Qonnections 2017 conference was recently held in Orlando, Florida and our Business Intelligence specialist Marian Ostaci attended a number of keynote addresses and breakout sessions.

One of the standout topics from this conference was cloud analytics, or more specifically hybrid cloud analytics. As hybrid cloud infrastructure has gained momentum this is not too surprising, and the term hybrid cloud analytics has been popping up a lot in the BI market. Hybrid IT is said to be changing the face of the industry, so it makes sense that this practice will extend to the cloud.

At Qlik 2020 Vision & Roadmap @ Qonnections 2017 this topic was expanded upon, and Qlik made it very clear that they have a vision that includes bringing the real value of cloud computing to all users, and that they are working towards customers embracing a more personalised cloud strategy, rather than having their options dictated by a vendor.

Qlik outlined what they looked on as their point of view with regards to what a cloud hybrid environment would mean. They said that they saw the cloud as a delivery mechanism, rather than a solution, that a hybrid approach to analytics makes absolute sense, and that hybrid cloud analytics, in a nutshell, would mean that they were able to analyse whether users were being given a viable solution, rather that a standard cloud solution that worked on a one-size-fits all basis.

Their ultimate definition was summed up as a platform-based visual analytics system whereby each component, from analytics and data preparation to visualization are available on site, or on public or private clouds or both- as determined by the customers data, specific needs or applications.

The key points regarding hybrid cloud analytics were:

  • Value of on going choice
  • Optimized computing
  • Seamless experience across infrastructure

Qlik expanded on these key points and their vision for the future of cloud storage, cloud computing and cloud analytics in the business sector.

Adding Value

Qlik is concerned that current cloud solutions are simply accepted at face value and that there is no real attempt to make them work at their optimum for the customer. Customers are simply adapting to the cloud services available and moulding their business model around them, rather than looking at ways to adapt them to work with their systems. Hybrid cloud analytics would allow for cloud services to work for the customer, and would add additional value to their operations.

Qlik feels strongly that cloud computing should be looked as very much as a delivery mechanism and not an overall solution. Visualising data is not simply going to drive business value, but being able to analyse it, explore it and understand it will certainly drive production and improve results.

Deriving real business value from analytics only comes when a business is able to really understand the data, and this leads to better decisions being made and improved profits. Hybrid cloud analytics can add value to every business and can help users determine what their data really means, how to make decisions based on stats and how to move forward. A dumbed-down analytics solution is never going to be a valuable business tool, and simply because it is delivered by the cloud doesn’t mean it will really benefit growth, engagement and ultimately, lead to increased revenue and success.

Optimizing Computing

With a hybrid approach to analytics, customers are able to define their strategy, rather than rely on one that’s been provided for them. This means that they can choose how they want their cloud services to run, what sort of infrastructure they require and how much they can afford to spend on this type of technology.

Currently, it seems that most businesses don’t have a black and white data and application solution – they may use cloud services, but also have data and applications that run on site, protected by a firewall. It’s for this reason that a hybrid approach to analytics would work so well, as it would support customers at their existing point, and assist them in migrating their workload over time, if they choose.

By implementing a hybrid approach to analytics customers can utilise their current infrastructure and make use of cloud services in a way that will fit in with their business model, rather than the cloud services dictating it. By optimising computing power, users will reap the rewards, and there is no need for massive amounts of money to be spent in changing systems, when they can be adapted and incorporate new methodologies as is.

Creating a Seamless Experience

Essentially, the point of hybrid cloud analytics would be to create a use experience that’s entirely seamless and that works across all platforms and infrastructure. With a hybrid option the customer should be able to choose which cloud they want to pair an on-site installation with and the cloud should work seamlessly with their existing infrastructure. Whether customers opt for a Qlik Sense Cloud, or a 3rd party private cloud solution, the results should be the same, and their existing infrastructure should be utilised, rather than alternatives (that may be costly) be required.

There are numerous large cloud vendors that dictate customer choices and whose products cannot be integrated with existing infrastructure. With hybrid cloud analytics, existing infrastructure would be worked with, rather than around, and on-site data and analytics should be accessible on any and all devices, including mobile, and managed as one.

Qlik is investing heavily in hybrid cloud analytics and in time they hope to deliver more capabilities that support this vision. Their aim is to empower customers and enable their cloud strategy to work for them, in the most rewarding way.

Synergo Group: A Top 10 Android Developer in 2017

Leading the industry and showing what can be done when you put a team of smart technical professionals in a room together has been our goal from the moment we took our first ever order many years ago.

We are proud to announce that the efforts of all our staff have enabled us to break into the Top 10 Android Development companies for 2017. Recently published on designdrizzle.com, this highly regarded industry list is something we are very proud to appear on.

Not only that, but we have appeared at an overall position of 6th. Our goal is now to continue to push the boundaries of how we can pair technology and customer service to give the best possible experience for the end user.

With that approach deeply embedded in our company culture, we anticipate solidifying our position and moving even higher up the list over the next 12 months.

App Store Optimization Guide to App Localization

The mobile app market continues to grow and over half the world has a smartphone, that’s nearly 3 billion global mobile users. With so many potential global customers, apps developers looking to enter the global app market or to generate visibility in their current market are in a constant competition to create visibility for their app.

Whether developers are looking for an audience in their current market or want to expand into the global app market, they should consider adopting an App Store Optimization strategy in the early stages of mobile development to adjust an app’s metadata in its original territory or when localizing its data to maximize the app’s appeal on a global scale. Developers who take the initiative to localize their metadata not only increase their conversion rates, but also increase their revenue by roughly 25 percent.

App localization is necessary to appeal to users on a global scale and incentivize users in foreign territories convert.

What is Localization and Why Does It Matter?

App localization is more than just translating an app into another language. The localization process means adapting an app to meet the language and making it locally relevant to the cultural requirements for a specific market.

Incorporating an ASO strategy into the localization process helps app improves an app’s metadata to generate discoverability and drive conversion in the new market. Some examples of countries with high volume mobile app users that are good to target are China, the US, Japan and the UK.

How to Implement a Global ASO Strategy

Search accounts for 65 percent of downloads, making it important for an app’s metadata to be relevant and easily discoverable in user searches. The metadata cannot just be translated into the intended language. Instead, developers need to adapt their keywords, title, description and screenshots to become relevant to user searches in foreign territories.

The steps to localizing an app’s metadata go as follows:

1. Determine Keywords

Developers looking to expand their app’s reach to foreign territories need to pay attention to their target audience, user behavior and trends before they start choosing keywords that are specific to user searches.

Often, developers have already been monitoring user trends and behavior in the app’s original territory. It’s imperative to monitor what trends and features the intended audience are interested in on global scale, or at least the foreign territories the developer intends on deploying their app in. Based off user behavior and trends, developers can localize their app’s metadata to become visible and localize their screenshots to convert users.

Keywords need to specific to the user trends, which are different across markets and regions. Keep in mind that there will be differences even among English speaking territories like the US and UK. Despite there being different trends across territories, developers don’t have to change the app’s name but should use different title tags to be relevant in the language of choice.

2. Title and Description

Developers can do a direction translation of the name and description, but should keep in mind that it may not improve conversion in the foreign territory.

When it comes to localizing the app title, developers need to be careful and make sure to use important keywords that express the app’s core features toward the beginning of their title tags.

For the description, however, if the developer does not plan on making changes themselves, they can instead send their description to a translator. Developers can give the translator freedom when writing the description, but need to make a note that the translator needs to use high-volume keywords throughout to appeal to audiences in foreign territories.

3. Creatives

The creatives, otherwise known as the screenshots, need to be localized to target users in a new territory. Screenshots should reflect elements from the country being localized to appeal to users.

When trying to successfully localize the screenshots, consider specific elements such as color scheme and high-volume keywords to convert better. Color schemes and trending features should be adjusted to appeal to what users want. Some color schemes and text fonts make it difficult for users to read the screenshots and can lead to confusion of the app’s core features.

Screenshots being localized for specific territories need to feature people that represent that culture. For example, when localizing for Asian territories, apps that primarily feature Americans are less likely to convert.

Key Takeaways

Anyone looking to expand their app’s reach in the current market or on the global app market need to use ASO best practices to make specific adjustments to their metadata to drive visibility and appeal to the intended audience.

Localizing an app’s metadata through App Store Optimization is necessary for any developer to see any success internationally.  Doing a direct translation of an app’s metadata through free sources like Google Translate may not be best for localization efforts and may even hurt your app if your users see that the language doesn’t read as naturally. Monitor user trends and behavior before determining which keywords to target in foreign territories and implement the new keywords to convert more users.