In April 2020, Sarah realized that she had to sell the products in her physical store in Nairobi online, because of the government COVID-19 lockdown measures. She set out to create an e-commerce website that would help her sell her scented candles and candle accessories online. She mapped out her audience and brand colors and in no time, her website was live. This was a great move for her small business as she was able to reach a wider audience while keeping in touch with her loyal customers. Having learnt from the COVID-19 lockdown, Sarah approached us with the aim of using data from her online and physical store to gain insights about her business. This would help her scale as well as learn how to come up with presentations that are easy to understand for her potential investors.
Her Data Needs: We recommended Microsoft Power BI, a business intelligence tool that analyses data and provides useful insights.
She wanted to understand:
- Her Customers: Most active time, new versus returning visitors, location, devices used most, most visited website pages and analyze profits and losses based on customer behavior.
- Her Stock: Understand the movement of stock, which candles are not in stock, what raw materials she needs to get and which are the most popular scented candles.
- Presentations: Based on the above insights, she wanted to be able create comprehensive presentations for investors and of course, beautiful ones.
- Power BI Solution and Training: We used a two-fold approach to address Sarah’s needs. We had to create a Power BI dashboard that collected data from different points and unified it on one dashboard, essentially giving crucial insight for Sarah’s business. We used an Excel sheet which had customer data and stock details as a data source. The team then got down to choosing the best charts, slicers, tables and matrices that would represent customer data and stock flow on one page in a comprehensive way. Once the dashboard was complete, Sarah took one of our Power BI Masterclasses that did not require her to have any prior Power BI knowledge. She covered the following among many other things:
- Introduction to Power BI and terminology
- Studying the Power BI suite of products
- Exploring the Power BI desktop interface
- Utilizing file types; pbix vs pbit
- Examining Power BI data sources
- Understanding Power BI workspaces
- Demo: Sample Power BI dashboard
- Lab: Creating a Power BI dashboard. View more here
At the end of this course, Sarah was able to do much more than she expected with Microsoft Power BI. Her favorite part was the fact that she could create beautiful and comprehensive presentations for her investors. She was also stoked about the fact that her data would always be secure and easily accessible as it is stored in the cloud.