Most of market analyst estimates that the Business Intelligence Tools market will grow rapidly in the upcoming years and this will create a new market of similar solutions. In this expanding scenario, there are important aspects that one should keep in mind while deciding who is the best partner:
1) Completeness: When you select a provider for customer analysis tools, you must ensure that it is able to provide you with all the tools you need now and in the future. It would be expensive in time and money to have to rely on multiple providers for the same service, simply because of a bad planning of which functionalities you need.
2) Transparency: A valuable provider is able to help you to estimate time and costs to acquire a new solutions, with few information you will provide about your shop or chain. The lack of transparency on time and costs for integration might mean bad organization or, worst, a malicious pricing strategy.
3) Proprietary Technology: If the company offering a service is relying on a third party and doesn't produce directly the devices, it is very likely that you will have to pay additional costs for the longer value chain. A good rule of thumb in the selection of a service provider is to check if it's able to provide also proprietary technologies and devices.
4) Competences: Think very well at what you are looking for and in what the potential provider is specialized. For example: if you are looking for customer analytics tools and you rely on a provider which core business is security, it is quite likely that you will end up with a solution which will make your store safer, but will provide few information about your customers.
5) Usability: Even the world best in class solution will sooner or later get abandoned if it is too complex to be used, making worthless all the investments. Ensure that the software provided is simple and intuitive, and that it provides you with the information you want in a few clicks.