Challenges of Using Location Data

In a survey conducted with C-level executives, managers, and analysts in the United States about Location Intelligence, respondents were asked about the challenges they face with location data.   Almost half of the respondents said ensuring the quality and accuracy of the data was the biggest roadblock on the way to successful adoption of a location strategy. 39% said they did not know how to extract value from the data, while 35% were worried about normalizing and cleaning the data.

These worries are not unfounded because not all location data is created equal. Location data is as dynamic as it is fast growing – people move, streets get renamed, postal code boundaries change, rural areas become developed, real estate changes hands, demographics shift – you get the drift. This is why any location data you use must be updated on a regular basis.

Simply put, if not having a location data strategy is detrimental to your business, using dirty or outdated data to inform key decisions is equally unwise.

Negative Impacts of Inaccurate Location Data

According to a recent survey by research firm Gartner, poor data quality can hit an organization to the tune of $15 million. Inaccurate, outdated, or incomplete location data directly translates into missing the opportunity to identify potential customers and planning new retail sites efficiently. Reduced insights into market segmentation further lead to mismanagement of sales territories. And since you cannot optimize your marketing campaigns with unclean data, the cost to acquire new customers also goes up – as do your IT costs to reconcile disparate databases with duplicate address entries.

When it comes to spatial information, having data for data’s sake is simply not enough. You need data that will translate into actionable insights.

Choosing a Reliable Location Data Provider

To make better-informed business decisions, you must ensure that your location data comes with rooftop-level accuracy and includes the most complete, accurate, and up-to-date address database on the market. Insist on high-precision geocodes and postal code polygons, enhanced points of interest, and land use status reports. Enquire if your location data provider is giving you access to topographic layers such as parks, railways, and water. And find out how frequently will the data be updated.

Today, the way you use location data is only limited by your imagination. As the Canadian market leader in location-based information and address data, DMTI Spatial regularly comes across several emerging use cases for location data – but all with the end goals of gaining a competitive edge, mitigating risks, and improving operational efficiencies.  If you are also looking for something similar, get in touch here.

Additional Reading:

6 Ways Bad Address Data is Impacting Your Business


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