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Data Silos

This is part 1 of a 5 part series on Data Silos.

Most businesses are using dozens of software products to run their business, ranging from payments and advertising to analytics and databases. Each of these systems contains a wealth of valuable information about your business, but having that information in different products can make it hard to get a complete view of all your data. When your data is not collected into one place and instead isolated among different systems, you have data silos.

Silos can be very frustrating, because the most useful and valuable insights usually involve more than one part of your business. How do your marketing tactics relate to customer support requests? How do changes to your website affect product returns? If your data is isolated into silos it can be hard to answer these questions.

Even if you invest the time required to combine your data from various products into one place (often called a “data warehouse” or a “data lake”), there are always a few systems that resist consolidation due to obscure data formats or difficulty in exporting their data. These silos persist because the types and number of software tools we use in business are changing far faster than our ability to aggregate.

This week we’ll cover techniques for breaking down data silos and combining your data together to make analysis easier.

Tomorrow we’ll get started with a basic overview of the process by which you consolidate the data from your silos into one place.

Quote of the Day: “We’re all islands shouting lies to each other across seas of misunderstanding.” ― Rudyard Kipling, The Light That Failed

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The Data Silos series