Every company desires to sell its products and services and to retain its customers. To do this successfully, leaders of sales departments need to constantly track and monitor records of their customers’ purchases and buying trends. In turn, this yields a better understanding of items to be produced and supplied to a particular client.
Embedded analytics simplifies this by allowing you to embed a dashboard showing products and suppliers in your application, allowing you to monitor key metrics. By knowing your sales performance and your customers’ relationship with your brand, it’s easier to identify when demand for certain products will be high and when to increase the supply a specific commodity.
In this blog, I am going to give you an overview of embedded analytics and how sales department leaders can gain insight from using Northwind products and suppliers data. I’ll cover the following topics:
- What is embedded analytics?
- Benefits of embedding a “products and suppliers” dashboard
- Bold BI’s Northwind “products and suppliers” dashboard example
- How to embed analytic tools into a sales apps
What is embedded analytics?
Benefits of embedding a “products and suppliers” dashboard
Embedding a dashboard of products and suppliers provides information on total sales made within a given time, the percentage of an order that comes from suppliers, and product order summaries. Leaders can use this to make real-time decisions to improve business performance. Using dashboard key indicators, you will be able to offer quality services to your customers and gain insights that help you stay one step ahead of your competitors. The following benefits can be acquired by embedding a “product and suppliers” dashboard:
- Improvements in strategic decision-making
- Increased customer engagement
- Proper inventory management
- Improvements in performance and competitive advantage
Improvements in strategic decision-making
Embedded analytics helps leaders in sales industries have a clear view of their sales performance by tracking metrics such as total sales, suppliers with minimum order percentage, suppliers with maximum order percentage, and price variation. Frequent monitoring of these metrics gives a clear picture of supplies with rise and fall in demand, supplies whose orders were once low and suddenly increased, and frequent increases and decreases in the number of sales made on a particular product. These enable managers to identify the root of the problem and the best solution for each case, helping them make better strategic decisions on how to fix issues before serious damage occurs.
Increased customer engagement
Embedded analytics helps production and supply departments understand each type of commodity offered in their company. This makes it much easier for sales representatives to explain a particular product, its features, and its benefits to their customers. Monitoring product order summary metrics allows sales agents to know and identify the type of products their customers have ordered and the information they need to know concerning the product. Using that knowledge, they can provide accurate information to their customers without confusing the products, making consumers surer, convinced, and comfortable with the products they order. This increases customer engagement with the brand and reduces the churn rate.
Proper inventory management
Embedded analytics helps leaders of sales departments frequently monitor the results of their sales products by tracking categories with high sales and categories with less sales to ensure that they always have adequate inventory to meet their customers’ demands. Examining these metrics allows leaders to identify the best and worst selling products in the department. This gives storekeepers insight into products and services that need to be restocked, thus keeping and maintaining inventories that match their customers’ demand to reduce cases of high-holding cost for the least selling, less-profitable products.
Improvements in performance and competitive advantage
Knowing current market trends is one of the key things that sales industries use to overcome their opponents. This allows you to always produce and supply the right product to companies, businesses, or individuals that need them. By tracking orders by country, you will be able to compare orders made by different countries to identify similarities. With this information, you will be able to identify the products ordered the most. This helps you improve product quality and quantity and ensure that they are always available. It also helps you set prices for them and make proper strategic plans that will help you supply them to your customers on time, gaining a competitive advantage.
Bold BI’s Northwind products and suppliers dashboard example
The Northwind Product and Suppliers dashboard example show managers how to track important metrics such as product order summary, categories with fewer sales, product category, and more. These metrics help managers analyze the sales performance of different products and ensure that they have sufficient inventory to meet customer demand.
Key metrics and KPIs
- Total sales
- Suppliers with maximum order percentage
- Suppliers with minimum order percentage
- Orders by country
- Product order summary
- Categories with high sales
- Categories with less sales
This number card shows the total amount of money made from products and services. It allows leaders to compare the total income received from past and current sales to identify the difference. This lets them know whether the business is profitable or not.
Suppliers with maximum order percentage
This bar chart shows the maximum percentage of products received from suppliers. It assists suppliers in keeping the right inventory to match customer demand. This is done by identifying the products ordered the most. Drill down to see the top products received for a respective supplier.
Suppliers with minimum order percentage
This bar chart shows the minimum percentage of products received from suppliers. Leaders can increase cost-saving opportunities using this metric by reducing the amount of stock in the warehouse. It also helps in keeping the right product in store to reduce holding costs. Drill down to see the least-demanded products.
Orders by country
This map shows orders made country-wise. It shows customer location, helping managers focus their marketing effort on those areas. It also helps them estimate shipping costs for their products.
Product order summary
This grid shows the details of products, suppliers of products, order quantity, available quantity, and sales amount. It helps inventory managers identify the amount received from the sale of available inventory. It also helps keep proper records of items that customers frequently order to reduce delays in delivery.
Categories with high sales
This column chart shows the categories with the highest sales. It helps leaders identify leading products within a category by total sales amount. This allows them to set future prices for such products. Drill down to see the top five products sold under each category.
Categories with less sales
This column chart showcases categories with less sales. It helps leaders identify products within a category and look for proper ways to improve the sales of such products in the future. Drill down to see the products with less sales under each category.
For more information about the key metrics and KPIs in this dashboard demo, refer to the Northwind Products and Sales Dashboard example.
How to embed analytic tools into a sales apps
Let’s see how analytics can be embedded into your sales applications. Bold BI helps you embed your dashboards on 18 web platforms, including React with ASP.NET Core, React with Go, WinForms, Node.js, Vue with Go, Vue with ASP.NET Core, and more. In this section, I am going to explain how to embed dashboards in ASP.NET MVC applications. Consider a scenario in which your sales team has an app like the one shown in the following image.
You can embed dashboards easily using Bold BI and avoid building an analytics or BI solution yourself. Follow these steps to embed your dashboard successfully.
Step 1: Create an ASP.NET MVC application.
First, create an ASP.NET MVC application. Open Microsoft Visual Studio and click New Project. Then choose ASP.NET MVC Web Application, enter the project name, and click OK.
Step 2: Configure embedded properties.
After the ASP.NET MVC web application is created, you need to create a model class called EmbedProperties under Models and provide the dashboard RootURL, SiteIdentifier, Environment, UserEmail, and EmbedSecret.
Property Value Descriptions
Bold BI dashboard server URL. For example: http://localhost:5000/bi.
For Bold BI, it should be something like “site/site1.”
For the Bold BI Cloud Analytics Server, it should be an empty string.
Your Bold BI application environment. If using Bold BI Cloud Analytics Server, you should use “cloud.” If using Bold BI, you should use “enterprise.”
The Bold BI server will use an email to authorize the authorization server.
Step 3: Generate embed secret.
You have to set the embed secret for authentication. You can get it from the Bold BI server. Click the settings icon in the left navigation bar and then click the Embed tab. Click Enable embed authentication and then click Generate Secret to generate the embed secret. Copy the secret key and paste it into the application. To learn how to do this in more detail, you can refer to our documentation.
Note: Save the secret key, as it cannot be retrieved again. If you do not save it, you will have to generate a new one using the Reset Secret option.
Step 4: Create an authorization server.
You need to implement an authorization server in the ASP.NET MVC application to be authenticated before embedding the dashboard from the Bold BI server. You can also configure the single sign-on (SSO)-based authorization server, which is an authentication endpoint that enables users to securely authenticate multiple applications using unique embed secrets. This prevents the need for the user to log into different applications separately.
Step 5: Create a Bold BI instance.
Step 6: Run the application to embed the dashboard.
After creating the ASP.NET MVC application, you need to run it. It will be launched with the dashboard details. Finally, you can see that the dashboard in the Bold BI server is embedded in your ASP.NET MVC application.
By following the previous steps, you can embed your dashboards into your Angular application.
Bold BI helps you integrate dashboards in your applications written in ASP.NET Core, ASP.NET MVC, Angular, ASP.NET, and Ruby on Rails. It will help save you time and prevent you from doing redundant work. Click this link to explore its features. To learn more about embedding dashboards into your application, refer to this blog and our help documentation.
I hope you now have a better understanding of Bold BI and how it can help a sales department to be more successful. You can create any kind of dashboard you like with Bold BI’s 35+ widgets and 130+ data sources.
Get started with Bold BI by signing up for a free 15-day trial and create interactive business intelligence dashboards. You can contact us by submitting questions through the Bold BI website or, if you already have an account, you can log in to submit your support questions.