Gaming Analytics: Leveling Up With Data-Driven Insights
The video gaming industry is rapidly being shaped by new technologies, shifting user preferences, and increased competition, so staying ahead of the curve is crucial for sustainable success. Gaming platforms generate a treasure trove of valuable data and gaming analytics unlocks insights that can be used to create more immersive and enjoyable experiences for players. Successful companies are using game analytics to maximize the value of this data, using it to optimize gameplay mechanics, balance difficulty levels, and keep players engaged.
In this article, we’ll explore how the practice of collecting, analyzing, and interpreting game data is helping developers and publishers gain valuable insights into player behavior, preferences, and performance. We’ll share how the unique capabilities of the modern cloud data platform create opportunities to improve game design, increase gamer retention, and grow revenue.
Why Game Analytics?
Gaming analytics uses data generated from in-game play and other sources to inform marketing, monetization, product development, and customer engagement decisions. With millions of players worldwide and new games constantly entering the market, a comprehensive gaming analytics strategy allows game design and marketing teams to make the data-informed decisions required to remain relevant and profitable. In addition to in-game data, gaming companies can also make use of data gathered from their social channels, their website, and third-party data for an even more in-depth view.
What Insights Can Be Gleaned From Game Analytics?
Data generated by millions of players logging countless hours of gameplay creates enormous opportunities for game developers and publishers to improve their strategies. Here are five examples of the benefits game analytics can deliver.
Understanding player behavior
Analyzing how players interact with the game, how much time and money they spend, and when and for how long they choose to play can illuminate player preferences, habits, and motivations. This information can be used to improve the gaming experience, personalize marketing efforts, and develop new games.
Identifying trends and patterns
Gaming analytics can identify macro trends and patterns in player behavior, helping developers understand how to optimize their games. Data gathered from player behavior can provide information about which game features are most popular, which levels are the most challenging, and where in the game players are most likely to disengage. This information can be supplemented with data gathered from social media, gaming forums, and other sources to allow game designers to understand the wants and needs of their players.
Optimizing game performance
Bugs, slow load times, unpopular features, or a poorly designed interface can quickly sap a game’s popularity. Game analytics can spot performance and design problems quickly, enabling developers to make adjustments and reduce the likelihood of player frustration or abandonment.
Personalizing the Gamer Experience
The strategies used for engaging casual gamers will be different from those used for speedrunners (gamers who try to complete a game in the fastest time possible), so understanding players as individuals is important. Understanding an individual gamer’s player style allows companies to personalize content, rewards, and incentives to encourage player engagement. In addition, game analytics can reduce churn rates. By analyzing behavioral data, predictive analytics can identify the users at the greatest risk of churning, moving gaming publishers to deploy personalized offers and incentives to boost engagement and improve retention.
Gaming analytics permits publishers to create the types of personalized experiences that deepen engagement. These tools allow developers to better understand player behavior and preferences and publishers, making it possible to identify new ways of increasing customer lifetime value, including optimizing in-game purchasing opportunities and creating highly individualized marketing messages.
How Does the Modern Data Platform Enhance Gaming Analytics?
Successful gaming analytics initiatives begin with a data strategy built on the foundation of a modern data platform. With its ability to process, store, and analyze vast quantities of data, the modern data platform offers a powerful, flexible, and future-proof solution for powering the tools and technologies used to collect and analyze game data. Here are just a few ways the modern data platform is enhancing gaming analytics and helping companies to gain a competitive edge.
Serves as a single source of truth
Data silos make it impossible to get a full picture of a gamer’s behavior and preferences in context. A modern data platform solves this problem by providing a single place to store all relevant data. With cloud-native support technologies for data acquisition, integration, and preparation that support the full data analytics life cycle, gaming developers and producers can realize the full value of their data.
Powers cloud-native analytics and integration of sophisticated AI/ML capabilities
Sophisticated artificial intelligence (AI and machine learning (ML) capabilities enable accurate analytics on massive amounts of data. The modern cloud data platform provides the compute and storage resources needed to process real-time data, allowing gaming publishers to serve up in-game purchasing opportunities, advertisements, and special offers relevant to the moment. In addition, modern platforms allow publishers to benefit from the latest ML and AI technologies, including advanced identity resolution tools that merge and enrich customer data records for more accurate personalization and recommendations across multiple channels.
Optimizes data access and sharing
Secure, governed data sharing democratizes data access, allowing ad hoc querying for data exploration by developers, marketers, data analysts, and more. A modern cloud data platform such as Snowflake supports secure data sharing with built-in data controls to enforce compliance. This allows teams across the organization to securely collaborate using a single copy of the data.
Protects subscriber data
There is a growing concern among customers about potential data breaches and misuse of their data. And safeguarding customer data is more challenging as technology becomes more complex. A modern cloud data platform offers robust data security so gaming companies can protect their data and comply with relevant industry and government regulations.
Enriches subscriber data with third-party data
Gaming companies collect a vast amount of data. But as the competition intensifies, businesses must continuously innovate to differentiate themselves and grow their user base. Supplementing in-house data with third-party data can accelerate marketing and product improvement initiatives to effectively identify the highest-value customer segments and provide all users with highly personalized experiences.
Power Up Gaming Analytics with Snowflake
The Snowflake Data Cloud provides the power and flexibility necessary to support even the most resource-intensive and complex gaming analytics initiatives. Using Snowflake, game developers and publishers can deploy the latest analytics tools and technologies. Snowflake’s high elasticity platform is built to accommodate disparate data sources including structured, semi-structured, and unstructured data, high concurrency, and high data volumes. With Snowflake, gaming analysts can easily access real-time insights to improve game play, deliver personalized game experiences, and drive revenue.