Speed Is All That Matters: The Difference between Getting Ahead and Being Left Behind for Market Share

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Click to learn more about author Ravi Shankar.

Just like any other Saturday, I was at home, spending time with family and catching up on work. My daughter, likewise, was in her room finishing up her homework before the weekend came to an end. Using her MacBook, she took her time and typed up her paper but as we all know, even the best laptops may falter. After many uses, the wire of her laptop charger was frayed and breaking off and unfortunately, this was the charger’s last hurrah as that green light finally went out.

Understandably, every high school student would panic in this situation – her assignment was due Sunday night and MacBook chargers are expensive. I searched through my Amazon account, found a reasonably priced charger, and hit the Same-Day shipping button. Needless to say, we were both ecstatic when the charger I ordered Saturday afternoon arrived on Sunday morning.

More than ever, consumers have plenty of options when it comes to making a purchase. However, when and where they choose to buy is heavily reliant on speed. I could have gone to the Apple store and bought it, but that would require more effort and money. I could have had it delivered from the Apple website, but that would require patience. Amazon provided me the fastest way to purchase my daughter’s charger while at same time providing me with the lowest effort and cost option. Like many instances these days, speed is all that matters.

Evolution of CRM Products

The same applies for the business. For example, Salesforce has the lead in the CRM market share, but this was not always the case. Back in the 90s, Siebel Systems dominated the CRM market in 2002 with a 45 percent market share. However, Siebel had some shortcomings. Since it was designed as on-premises software, installations would take about six months. On top of that, any modifications would require additional resources. The application required plenty of engineers and IT support to maintain it, and business users would need to wait one or two months to make any simple changes.

Salesforce soon realized that they had quite the advantage when it offered a much faster alternative. They hosted their solution in the cloud and made the user interface extremely easy for the business user. As a result, these users did not need to inconvenience themselves by going to IT. Salesforce completely changed the way CRM products work and, thanks to its speed, the company raced its way to the top and ultimately claimed 19 percent of the market share.

Speed Penetrating Data Integration

Traditional data integration resembles Siebel’s stance in the market during the 90’s – old and outdated. For instance, ETL requires an army of engineers and long periods of time to make simple changes. As a result, businesses cannot access their data from these different source systems and eventually started falling behind. Also, data is often replicated, which increases the wait time and the cost of storing duplicate information. Businesses need a faster and much more efficient way to sort through data.

Data Virtualization provides real-time data integration that traditional methods are no longer capable of. Like my daughter and her charger, businesses do not like waiting.  Once they input their data, they want to be able to see it. They want to be independent and not have to rely on a separate IT team for results. This is where Data Virtualization comes along. Data Virtualization delivers fast results while requiring a significantly smaller engineering team to support it; and it does not require storing the data. Traditional data integration methods have too many loopholes in such a rapidly evolving market and will not be able to support itself as Data Virtualization continues to penetrate the market.

Amazon’s Own Approach to Speed

Just as every industry is changing at a fast rate, so are grocery outlets. Many companies worry about their future after Amazon’s recent purchase of Whole Foods. Instead of the face-to-face customer interaction realized through brick-and-mortar grocery outlets, Amazon is providing a more convenient way to purchase groceries at home. They are using their quick speed as a way to change the groceries market. Naturally, this convenience would have a significant impact, as $22 billion of market value vanished from brick-and-mortar grocery outlets, including Walmart and Target.

Data Virtualization has this impact as well. There are many factors when people make a purchase, all of which tie into how convenient that product is to them. Speed is what makes a difference there. With faster solutions, consumers have the instant gratification they want in that purchase. Data Virtualization changes the data integration market with one simple factor – it is faster; and in the simplest terms, that can be enough to change the market and completely revolutionize data integration.

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