February 28, 2022
How to get, analyze and use Business data

As the business data will be extremely valuable for your Business Development and Market Intelligence departments, the Commercial & Marketing Director shall work closely with Digital Transformation & IS Director to lead ambitious projects to capture and analyze these data. There are mainly three different approaches to use data for market intelligence.

  1. Access to a platform (Software as a Service) through a licence to access data and interface.
  2. Transform your data within your organization through an ambitious IT projects.
  3. Partner with a Business Intelligence platform and customize it with your own data and own requirements.

Using existing Business Intelligence Solutions available on the market 

In most of the cases, your company will pay a monthly or yearly licence to access  digital or/and human services. You  will have a login and password to access an online service enabling you to:

  • Access information such as tenders, procurement news, contract awards, organizations… through an interface based on a  search bar and filters.
  • Access notifications services, market views through dashboard, functionalities to organize the data.

There are many solutions on the Market (Tenders info, DGMarket, Tender247, Vecteur +, DoubleTrade, Deepbloo, Maabir, Pro AO, Tender page, Tenders on Time…). In order to help you to make a choice, this table summarizes here the key points you need to take into account when choosing a Business Intelligence  platform.

Features Criteria
Search bar This is the key feature of your search, it has to integrate logical operator, strict research and synonyms.
Advanced filters Specialized platform will be able to propose filters relevant to your activity (ex: power or voltage range in the energy sector) and not only general filters.
Automated queries Set-up and register specific search in order to save accurate requests.
Notifications Set-up and manage your notifications to receive mails with relevant tenders or other business information.
User interface Access different views (change the order of columns, select the column you want to feature, filters results).
Business suggestions Get recommendations on similar tenders, potential partners.
CRM Integration Possibility to integrate the data to your CRM to create automatically leads.
Diversity of data To get various type of data: Tender, Procurement news, Awards.
Data enrichment Exhaustivity and reliability of data is the key point. Some BI platform use external services to enrich their data with external content.
Collaborative functions Possibility to notify a colleague, to assign someone to an action, to share a pipeline of opportunities…
Players database Having access to a directory of organizations.
Dashboarding Having access to dashboards, graphs, maps, views… to understand the market from different perspectives.

Subscribing to Business Intelligence Platform providing you a complete Business Intelligence solution as SaaS has many advantages:

  • The cost is low : pricing varies between 200 euros to 10 000 euros a year
  • The implementation is fast: A login and password will be enough to access the service. You may need to set-up your preferences (automatic queries, notifications…) but you will get the solution fully in hand in a few days.

However, the main drawbacks you will face are:

  • Exhaustivity of information: Very few Business Intelligence Platforms or Tenders Providers  will cover all the information you are looking for. Indeed: (1) Some tenders can not be captured because they can be only accessible to registered vendors. (2) Having a coverage in region of the world is a challenge as in many countries the publication of tenders or contract awards is still only on newspapers and this require to have local partner to buy the newspapers and scan it everyday. (3) Getting reliable procurement news is challenging as well as it requires to extract a huge amount of sources and analyze it.

That is why you may not be notified for all possible relevant tenders and not be able to find all data you are interested in.nYou still can subscribe to different platforms in order to maximize your coverage. 

  • The low customization to meet your requirements. It might be difficult for BI Platform working on Saas Model to integrate all your specific requests in terms of contents (specific data source to extract or type of data to be analyzed) as well as in terms of functionalities. However some Platforms do integrate specific customers requests in their general Roadmap.

Transform your own data within your organization through an ambitious IT projects

If you are looking for the perfect BI solution containing exactly the content you want and with a customized interface perfectly integrated to your other applications, you could decide to develop in house (or subcontract) your own solution.

In terms of data: 

  • You will extract or collect the exact sources of data you want (for example: all utilities in Africa, all the regional website in France) :
  • You will be able to add your own private sources (for example the tenders your receive from a private portal where you're registered as a vendor)
  • You will be able to decide exactly which data have to be analyzed

In terms of interface:

  • You will build your own interface with all functionalities, filters, views as per your own requirements.

Managing such a data transformation project is complex and requires expertise from data extraction to visualization and shall necessarily involve IT Team but sponsored by the Commercial and Marketing Department who is the customer of this project.

The scheme here below provide you an overview of the complexity of the process to get valuable data and the requested expertise in technologies: 

Let’s take an example: You want to understand the market of Power Transformers in Brazil from a few Utilities and decide to The following steps are:

Phase Steps
Data extraction
  • Identify all the websites you want to scrap.
  • Develop bots to scrap websites (exact url) and specify exact information.
  • Data processing
  • Deduplicate the tenders scrapped from different sources
  • Consolidate all data in one database.
  • Get attached files.
  • Develop a process or use external services to transform docs (jpeg, pdf, scan…) into readable format that you will analyze.
  • Data Analysis
  • Use keywords search, Regex.
  • Use Natural Language Processing and train Machine Learning model to understand the context and capture data (metrics, localisation…).
  • Data Indexation
  • Store data on a database.
  • Index data in a search engine.
  • Data Visualisation
  • Push data to your own interface (CRM , BI tool) or develop a dedicated interface.
  • Managing such a project is a Corporate project in line with the Digital Strategy of the company as it requires an important effort in terms of budget and project management.

    You can get the demo here

    Partner with a Business Intelligence platform and customize it with your own data and own requirements

    This is an intermediary solution which will enable you to get the best of the two previous solutions and therefore is the best compromise. 

    The objective is to use a Business Intelligence platform with whom you will partner in order that they develop your specific requirements (in a dedicated private environment).

    • Provide them the sources you want them to extract. 
    • Provide them key features you want to add
    • Provide them specific data to be analyzed.
    • And if you do  want to use your own interface, request them to push all the data into your own system. 

    This subcontractor will be in a position to deliver its current solution but with all specificities you have required in terms of content and features and in a dedicated environment.

    You can see more the Custom Market Intelligence Project here

    Overview of solutions

    Using existing BI platform (Saas) Build your own BI Project Customize your own project based on existing BI platform
    Complexity Low High Medium
    Costs Low High Medium
    Customization level Low High High
    Relevance Medium High High
    Possibility to get data on your IS Yes Yes Yes