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It’s easy to get carried away when creating your website because A). Creating a website is fun, and B). There are tons of different options available when it comes to customizing your site.

However, it’s important to make sure that you don’t go overboard and create something confusing and overpowering. If your website is too complicated, you run the risk of scaring off readers (if the page will even load in the first place. If that isn’t enough to get you to stop downloading all of those plugins and upload those photos, consider your SEO. Simple websites often lead to better SEO.

Why Simple Websites Offer Greater SEO Benefits

When you have less to worry about on your website, it’s probably easier for you as a Webmaster to manage your SEO efforts and really make things happen. Aside from just having more time and thinking about other SEO factors you could perform, however, Google actually finds it easier overall to crawl simpler websites.

There are essentially two main reasons that simple websites fair better in the SEO game than the complicated ones:

Google Can’t Keep Up. Putting your actual SEO efforts aside, Google bots are not necessarily keeping up with all of the latest design and display technology. It’s hard to believe that Google would be behind on anything, but the truth is that this isn’t the first thing Google has on its mind. Their ability to understand and then crawl all of these new things just isn’t as fast as the rate at which they are developing.

As discussed above, Gray noted that the latest case of big brands getting their way dealt with none other than the infamous Apple. Here he discussed the recent case that sparked this discussion:

What actually qualifies as a “simple” website is up for debate, but it certainly doesn’t mean that your website has to be void of color or cool fonts or quality graphics. A general rule of thumb is to make sure you’re not taking too many risks when it comes to the pages where customers can really convert. On your other pages, just use your best judgment (Hint: Tons of videos and fancy flash players might be a bit much).

Photo Credit: revandy.org

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How To Submit Websites & Pages To Search Engines: A Simple Guide

Knowing how to submit websites and individual pages to search engines is an essential skill for SEO professionals and webmasters alike.

Whether you’re building a new website or simply adding new content, knowing the ins and outs of indexation is key.

What You’ll Need Before Submitting

First, you’ll need access to edit your website.

Some people may refute this and claim backend web access is not necessary to submit a website to search engines. Well, they’re right.

However, there are some cases where you’ll need access to a website’s backend.

Situations Where You’ll Need Backend Access

The website doesn’t have a sitemap.

The website doesn’t have a chúng tôi file.

The website doesn’t have Tag Manager or a way to verify Google Search Console/Bing Webmaster Tools access.

If your client or IT team doesn’t allow you to have access to their backend, or your CMS has certain limitations, see if you’re able to obtain FTP access. This will come in handy later in this article.

Get Access to Google Search Console & Bing Webmaster Tools

If you really want to maximize your organic traffic potential, make sure to submit your website to as many relevant search engines as possible. This may seem pretty obvious, but a little reminder is always nice to have.

So, what will we need?

Most search engines have their own set of webmaster tools to help us manage our web presence. However, the big two you really need are:

Google Search Console

Bing Webmaster Tools

Setting up Google Search Console

Before you can submit your website to Google, you’ll need to set up a Search Console account and verify website ownership. You use your Gmail account for this.

If you manage multiple website domains, you will be able to manage all of them from the same account.

Once your account is set up, make sure to follow Google’s guidelines on verifying your website property. There will be prompts that provide you with multiple options to verify your website. If your account is the same as your Analytics account, your website will be auto-verified.

Setting up Bing Webmaster Tools

The first step here is to set up an account. Bing makes this easy by allowing you to sync your existing email accounts to quickly create a Bing Webmaster Tools profile.

Once you’re logged in to Bing’s Webmaster Tools, you’re ready for the next step of submitting your website.

How to Submit an Entire Website 1. Create a Sitemap Index with Categorized Sitemaps

When managing the indexation for an entire website, it’s important to know how to manage it at scale. Having an optimized sitemap can help make this process much easier for webmasters, and most importantly search engines.

When I refer to a sitemap here, I’m referring to an XML file, not an HTML sitemap.

Depending on the nature of your site, it may make sense to create multiple sitemaps to help silo your content into relevant categories. You can even create an image sitemap to help boost your image optimization strategy.

You can use a sitemap index as a root, and link to each sitemap from there.

If you use the Yoast plugin, all of this can be done automatically.

If you aren’t on WordPress, there are many other tools that can help you create your own sitemap. Screaming Frog is my go-to for situations where there’s no automatic sitemap tool.

Uploading XML Sitemap Through FTP

If you don’t have access to your website’s backend, having FTP access can really save you here.

If this is your first time accessing the backend of your website, this can be tricky. Once you’re connected to your FTP, follow these steps to upload your XML sitemap.

Search for your public_html directory.

Open your public_html directory.

Upload your sitemaps to that directory.

Easy!

Now you need to test your site to make sure it has been uploaded correctly.

To test, simply copy your file name and add it to the end of your website URL. For example:

or

2. Optimize Your Robots.txt

So you’ve created and optimized your sitemap. What does a chúng tôi file have to do with this?

Well, there are few simple steps to make sure that search engines are able to crawl and index your website.

Add a Link to Your Sitemap

You can actually add a link to your sitemap file in your chúng tôi file. This helps search engines quickly locate your sitemap and may improve your crawl rates.

Double Check Disallow Directives

If you’re launching a new website, make sure your website DOES NOT say this:

That simple two lines of text will block all major search engines from crawling your website. You’d be surprised how often web developers don’t check for this when launching websites.

3. Submit Sitemap to Google & Bing

Remember at the beginning of this article when we set up Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools? Well, that’s about to come in handy.

Both of these platforms allow us to submit sitemap links. This is a quick way to tell search engines which pages you want them to crawl.

You can submit individual sitemaps, but it may be a bit quicker to just submit your sitemap index.

How to Submit Individual Pages

Did you know that both Google and Bing allow you to submit individual pages?

That’s right! But don’t get too excited.

While some pages can get indexed quickly, sometimes search engines may take longer to index your submitted pages.

Google Search Console – URL Inspection Tool

Google’s new Search Console platform has one of my favorite new tools, the URL Inspection Tool. This is a fairly comprehensive tool that allows webmasters to get instant feedback about how Google perceives certain aspects of a webpage.

One of the best features of this tool is the ability to request indexing. Sound familiar?

That’s because the URL Inspection Tool has replaced the Fetch as Google tool from the old Search Console.

I’ve personally seen instant indexation using this tool, but other SEO professionals have reported slower results.

Bing Webmaster Tools – Submit URLs

In a recent announcement, Bing said that they’re allowing webmasters to submit up to 10,000 URLs per day.

By using the Submit URLs tool in Bing Webmaster tools, you’re helping Bing save crawling resources. Makes sense, but it goes against how search engines typically work.

If Bing is openly encouraging webmasters to submit their URLs for indexation, then why not add this to your marketing checklist?

Bonus Tips!

We covered some direct methods for getting your links indexed, but there are also some indirect methods for getting links indexed.

For those who are new to SEO, it’s important to note that most search engine crawlers discover new webpages through links.

Let’s throw search engines a bone and help them discover our content!

Google Publishers Search API Optimize Internal Links

Optimizing your internal links is a vital part of every essential SEO checklist. Having a structured linking scheme on your site helps search engines discover new pages on your site.

Ramp Up Your Link Building Efforts

Yes, Link building should already be on your SEO checklist.

However, ramping up your link building efforts can help Google find pages on your site. Try earning new links or even reclaim broken backlinks.

The Wrap Up

Some SEO experts may consider implementing all of these tactics to be a bit overkill. However, every little bit helps.

Just like anything in SEO, better performance comes from a culmination of factors, not just one.

More Resources:

Fedora Vs. Ubuntu: Is Either Better?

ALSO SEE: Ubuntu vs. Fedora: The Latest Versions Square Off

Fedora or Ubuntu? That is a question that Linux users are asking with increasing frequency.

The only trouble is, providing a definitive answer to the question is not as easy as it used to be — a discovery that, if nothing else, suggests the current state of desktop Linux.

Fedora, formerly known as Fedora Core, is sponsored mainly by Red Hat. In fact, many of those who work full-time on Fedora are Red Hat employees, and the Fedora Leader and four of the eight members of the board of directors are appointedby Red Hat.

This connection has caused some critics to dismiss Fedora as a beta version of Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Yet while it is true that releases of Red Hat Enterprise Linux are snapshots of Fedora, the truth is that Fedora largely manages its own affairs.

Similarly, Ubuntu is the community arm of Canonical Software. Both were founded by Mark Shuttleworth, who jokingly refers to himself as Self-Appointed Benevolent Dictator for Life. General direction tends to be decided by the Technical Board, which tends to be dominated by members who have served several years and are Canonical employees. However, as with Fedora, daily decisions are mostly left to community-based teams.

The Fedora desktop

In the last five years, both Fedora and Ubuntu have attracted large and rapidly growing communities, often governed by codes of conduct and having their own in-person meetings — FUDCon for Fedora and the Ubuntu Developer Summit for Ubuntu. Members of both are also active in other free and open source software meetings, especially GNOME’s GUADEC.

In short, Fedora and Ubuntu have evolved surprisingly similar structures. The main difference lies in their goals: Ubuntu aims to provide “an open-source alternative to Windows and Office,” and is currently focusing on usability improvements, while Fedora‘s goal is to create “a Linux-based operating system that showcases the latest in free and open source software.” (FOSS)

At times, these goals leave both open to criticism. Some suggest that Ubuntu’s eagerness to make changes means that the distribution may make changes without ensuring that the changes are spread throughout the FOSS community. Similarly, users sometimes accuse Fedora’s emphasis on innovation as being made at the expense of stability.

Most users install Ubuntu and Fedora from Live CDs that require minimal input from users and complete in well under half an hour, including some post-install configuration. Should you have problems with either one’s installer, you can use them in text mode. Ubuntu also boasts an alternate installer that is actually Debian’s standard one, which gives fine-grained control over every aspect of installation.

The two distributions also include other variations, including ones for USB drives and remixes or spins –customized installation disk images, often ones for less popular desktop choices such as LXDE or Sugar. Ubuntu also offers WUBI (Ubuntu Installer for Windows), which installs on to an existing Windows partition and chooses an operating system as your computer turns on.

Fedora and Ubuntu alike are centered on the GNOME desktop. However, each also includes packages for KDE and Xfce4. In fact, Ubuntu has separate distributions for theses other desktops called Kubuntu and Xubuntu. Both distributions, especially Fedora, are sometimes said to neglect these alternative desktops by focusing too much on GNOME.

Apart from themes and desktop wallpaper, Fedora and Ubuntu’s default GNOME desktops differ only in minor ways. A few tools are in different positions, and Fedora installs with Abiword instead of the GIMP, while Ubuntu includes F-Spot and Xsane by default. But for the most part, the differences are so slight that twenty minutes of adding packages to each would cancel them out.

Next Page: Fedora vs. Ubuntu, installation, admin, security

What is noticeable is that in the software selection is the different approaches to proprietary drivers. Neither distribution installs a Flash player by default. However, Fedora has a policy of not including proprietary hardware drivers in its software repositories. That means that, if you want to use NVidia’s proprietary video drivers, you have to a site like RPM Fusion and run the (usually slight) risk of installing from an unofficial site.

Like Fedora, Ubuntu also has a policy of not using proprietary drivers if possible. But, unlike Fedora, Ubuntu includes them in its repositories, leaving users to decide whether to install them. Ubuntu also includes a Partner repository that includes third party proprietary software.

In the future, the differences in the default software are likely to increase. For example, to save space on the CD, Ubuntu will drop the GIMP from is default software. Unless the distributions drop CD support and move to DVDs exclusively, such choices will probably become more frequent as each distribution struggles with space restrictions.

In the past, the fact that Ubuntu uses Debian packages and Fedora RPM packages would have been a major difference between the two distributions. Seven or eight years ago, Debian packages would automatically install missing software needed to run the applications you chose, while RPM packages would leave you having to install the missing software yourself, and often send you into an endless loop of requirements unfondly known as dependency hell.

The Ubuntu desktop

But, today, thanks to Yum, dependency hell is largely a forgotten trauma. With both Fedora and Ubuntu including graphical software installers, most users are unlikely to notice any difference when installing software.

Because it is based on Debian, which probably has the largest number of packages of any distributions, Ubuntu may give you a greater choice of software. However, if so, Fedora’s selection is still rich enough that you are unlikely to notice any difference.

Software for administration differs only slightly more than general productivity choices. What at first appears to be a greater selection of tools in Ubuntu proves, on closer examination, to be simply a preference for displaying the tools in the Administration menu rather than in a System Tools Applications menu in Fedora.

Still, both distros have tools that the other might benefit from. Fedora has Desktop Effects as a standard item in the Preferences menu, although using it requires a video driver with 3-D acceleration. Fedora also includes the option of using a fingerprint system for logging in rather than the more common user name and password.

To minimize the time you spend with root user privileges, Ubuntu uses sudo. This setup requires you to preface administrative commands with “sudo” and to enter your password before the command proceeds. Most users quickly accustom themselves to this procedure, but some may find it a nuisance. Some may even consider it less secure, since getting hold of a user account may give an intruder root access immediately, without the need of getting a second password.

Fedora does not use sudo. Instead, it opts for a separate root password, while restricting graphical access to the root account – a choice that seems pointless, since most intruders are likely to be at home at the command line.

However, Fedora does include the extensive reactive tool called SE Linux, set to a level of security high-enough that users may need to disable it in order to install some software. Although some users loathe SE Linux, largely for such inconveniences, its share of system resources is slight and its security strong enough that it is well worth enduring. In daily computing, you probably won’t even notice it is there.

Next Page: Fedora vs. Ubuntu, maturity and the lack of choice

The only way you can make a meaningful choice is if some feature is of special interest to you. You might install with Ubuntu’s alternate installer if you are having trouble getting any distribution onto a particular set of hardware, or go with Ubuntu because you need easily configurable non-English language support.

Similarly, you might choose Fedora because of the peace of mind that SE Linux brings, or because you want to use fingerprint authentication. Someone who feels strongly about the use of Mono would probably want to avoid both in favor of something on the Free Software Foundation’s list of free distributions.

The truth is, given the mature state of the free desktop and each distro’s undoubted wish to match the features of rivals, it is becoming increasingly harder to find features that make one stand out from the other. There are still significant differences in desktops. But when distributions use the same desktop, the way that Fedora and Ubuntu do, then the differences are likely to be unnoticeable to three out of four users. These days, you are even unlikely to find any differences in speed or stability unless you have some unusual hardware configuration.

That may be an unsatisfying answer to those who like to pick a side and defend it. But look at it this way: the lack of a clear victor shows the general sophistication of free software today. Now, in most cases, you don’t have to choose between major distributions — no matter what your choice, it is likely to be a reasonable.

Negative Seo: Does It Really Work?

Similar like the normal world, both good and evil exist in SEO society, as well.

“Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws.” Plato

Good people, a.k.a. ethical SEOs, use white hat tactics to increase the credibility of the website and make it rank in search engines for the desired key phrases. On the other hand, the evil doers, or the unethical/negative SEOs, try the reverse process. Instead of striving to rank high in search engines, they devour most of their time in cheap and low-level link building for the competitor’s website to drop its ranking.

Negative SEO sounds dangerous, but the million-dollar question is, does negative SEO work? SEOmoz recently received an unnatural link warning from Google, but according to them, neither their traffic nor their rankings were affected. Thus, the answer to this question has been a blurry one, and no one is sure about it, not even me!

So, as I didn’t have any particular clear answer to that, I thought to talk to other great professionals and see what they think about negative SEO.

Peter Attia (@PeterAttia)

In regards to negative SEO, I haven’t done any direct experimenting, so I’m not sure how much help I could be. The only case I’ve heard about is affecting rankings by only a few positions, not major movements.

In my opinion, if you have an authoritative site with natural links, you really don’t have anything to worry about. Of course, cleaning up bad links definitely wouldn’t hurt.

Julie Joyce (@JulieJoyce)

From what I have personally seen, negative SEO isn’t usually done on such a scale (or using links on sites with authority) that it can affect rankings. However, I have seen people in forums talking about this being what they think is the source of falling rankings/traffic. Logically, if good links can help you, bad links should be able to hurt you, but with the recent statements and warnings issued by Google, I really don’t know what to think right now.

Considering how amazingly difficult it is to build good links on good sites, I can’t imagine that conducting a negative SEO campaign would be easy for anyone. Why waste the time? If you’re able to quickly build links to attempt to hurt another site, you cannot be putting those links on sites that are worth anything, since links on good sites don’t just happen in a flash; they happen with serious hard work.

If a site is the victim of a negative link campaign and rankings or traffic do start to fall, I would make sure those bad links are indeed the reason for this, because maybe there’s something else … links aren’t always the problem. If you did determine that those links were the problem, I would get a list of them using whatever tool you like for grabbing your backlinks. If you have not done anything wrong and your profile is clean, you will need that list when you submit a reconsideration request to Google if it comes to that.

I would definitely look at the links, too, and not just verify that they are bad links based on the metrics you see in the tool that you use. If you’ve done some shady stuff yourself, you should clean up the mess YOU have created before you talk to Google, though.

Sorry to ramble so much, but in regards to whether you should clean up negative links, I’d say that it may not be worth your time if those links are ignored, but if your site keeps declining in performance online, you may have to try it.

Alessio Madeyski (@madeale)

Negative SEO exists. No doubt about this, but I’m thinking more from a user perspective: If I’m seeing some bad links in my favorite wine forum pointing to an e-shop selling shoes (for an action of the so-called negative SEO), I’m going to be pissed with that e-commerce dropping links with no sense.

So it clearly exists, but rather than spending money and time removing all the bad links, why don’t we focus on creating a stronger brand awareness or doing something cool for the user? I mean, if the user trusts you, there is no bad link that can keep the user away from your site because they trust you. Bad thing is that, all the people who put lot of efforts removing all the bad links to me are in a way guilty because they know they’re not doing a great job with their clients or with their sites.

Negative SEO is such a stupid thing to do, that put a dark shadow in the whole SEO industry, even the most pure and right one, but don’t spend time on it. Create something cool, actionable, useful for the users, and you can f*ck the negative SEO off.

Jason Acidre (@jasonacidre)

In my experience, I’ve seen it work for some of our previous clients (even back when I was still a freelance consultant). There were also some who have been attacked and were publicized, which really means that negative SEO is a force to reckon with.

There are so many solutions to negative SEO (I’ve even written a post about that), and cleaning up the crap links out of the profile is certainly one of those. However, the best one is still making an effort to exemplify the site as a strong brand through its core marketing campaigns, so that these unwanted links wouldn’t be able to hurt the site in terms of search rankings and even as a brand on the Web.

Jon Cooper (@PointBlankSEO)

As long as a site can get penalized in Google, then yes, negative SEO can work. I don’t know to what extreme a negative SEO attack can be, so I can’t truthfully answer this question. For questions like this, though, it’s mostly speculation.

I would only make link removal an option if the client’s site is small enough. For example, if I had a relatively well-established brand with few missteps in the past with a solid link profile, and then know, I wouldn’t bother with removing those links. On the other hand, if it was a small business website with few links pointing to it beforehand, and if the bad links made up a large portion of the link profile, then yes, link removal would definitely be an option. It’s all relative to the trust and authority your site has built up prior to the attack.

Bottom line: Nobody exactly knows how dangerous negative SEO is, but from my personal experience and the thoughts from the pro desk, it is clear that negative SEO does exist and it can hurt your website to an extent. However, there are ways to minimize the impact of negative SEO, and one of the many ways is to create amazing content and gain link from most trusted sources on the Web.

Image Credit: Shutterstock / dragon_fang and Thinglass

How To Make A Simple Desk Using Only One Sheet Of Plywood!

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This simple desk is made from a sheet of plywood. This DIY desk features a midcentury modern design with cubbies for storage space. If you love vintage furniture, you will love this desk!

I love simple builds, like this easy to build daybed, kitchen table and this bench. You might also like this simple table tutorial.

This easy to make desk is inspired by a vintage desk that I sold, much to my son’s chagrin. Luckily for him, I made him one that is (almost) just as cool.

It’s a tale as old as time. The shoemaker’s kids with no shoes. The furniture flipper’s kid with no desk. It just ain’t right. Particularly when said kid fell in love with a recent desk that I brought home and I sold it anyways.

Some moms are so mean.

In my defense, the desk he loved was far too large for his tiny room. I was very inspired by the MCM beauty and drew up plans to build him a simple version of that gorgeous desk.

Want to learn how to make your own simple desk from a sheet of plywood?

The Inspiration Desk

Look at dem legs. 

MCM furniture makes me swoon. Look at those sleek lines.

My version is a pared down, simple version.

How to Make a Simple Desk

This post contains affiliate links. By purchasing an item through an affiliate link, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Supplies Needed

Scroll to the end for the printable cut list. 

Prep Work: Cutting and Painting the Wood

You can either get the nice people at the hardware store to cut your wood or you can cut it yourself at home. We chose to cut it ourselves at home since there were so many cuts. Note: if you don’t have a table saw, it’s still possible to cut your wood with a circular saw and a guide, which is how we do it.

Sand the edges to avoid splinters.

Separate your wood into cubby parts. I wanted the cubbies on the desk to be painted, so I primed the wood first. Each cubby is a different color, so I painted the pieces for the long skinny one in a dark navy (Clark and Kensington Nein Nein Nein – it’s a few years old) and the smaller cubby in my favorite shade of oops paint. It’s very similar to the Annie Sloan Amsterdam Green color though.

Once they were dry, I added pocket holes with a kreg jig to the top of the sides for the small cubby.

Learn how to use a kreg jig to make pocket holes. 

Building the Desk Cubbies

Now it’s time to assemble. Apply a thin line of glue along the back of the bottom piece.

Add the back to the desk and use corner clamps to line it up well. Use more clamps if necessary. Wipe away excess glue. 

Once clamped, attach the desk with the pneumatic nail gun.

I created the smaller cubby at the same time using the same steps of gluing and nailing the back to the bottom piece.

Let the glue dry for at least 30 minutes before removing the clamps.

Attach the sides in the same way for each cubby, but nail from the sides as well. Make sure that the pocket holes in the small cubby face up. 

Attach the desk top to the sides and back in the same manner. (The small cubby will not have a top.)

When everything is dry, add the plywood edging. It’s really easy to use and hides the plywood edges to make it look like a solid piece of wood. I found it easiest to roll it out to the right length and gently fold it at the edge where it needs to be cut to “mark” it. Then just cut it with scissors. Set the iron to “Cotton” (no steam) and just iron it in place, holding the iron in place for a few seconds until it stuck. You can use a towel or foil if you’re concerned about getting your iron dirty.

 Now it’s time to stain the outside of the desk. Normally, I like to use wood conditioner, but I forgot. Luckily the plywood stained beautifully without it! I used Minwax Dark Walnut, but Special Walnut would have been lovely as well. Stain the legs while you’re doing this.

Attaching the Desk Cubbies and Legs

I left the bottom unstained so that I could stain in once it was installed. Flip the piece to where the bottom is exposed and set the cubby on it upside down.

Attach the cubby with the pocket holes.

Find the center on the side of the desk and mark it with chalk if you stained it dark. Then line up the legs and screw them in place with deck screws. Deck screws really pull wood together nicely, so they’re my favorite to use. Plus, they’re harder to strip. 

Fill screw holes and pocket holes with wood filler if desired.

Touch up any stain that still needs to be stained.

Seal with a few coats of your favorite top coat. I used polycrylic applied with a sponge.

Flip over your desk and enjoy it.

I love the legs!

Now my kid has a simple desk of his own, just in time to start high school.

Cut List for Building this Desk

Cut List and Guide for this Simple Desk

You might also like: Pin for Later!

Emy is a vintage obsessed mama of 2 DIYer who loves sharing affordable solutions for common home problems. You don’t need a giant budget to create a lovely home. Read more…

Business Analytics Vs. Data Science – Which One To Choose?

Organizations rely on valuable insights to drive their success in today’s data-driven world. Business Analytics and Data Science are two key disciplines at the forefront of this data revolution. Similarly, professionals in the roles of Business Analyst vs Data Scientist play crucial roles in extracting meaningful insights from data. But what sets them apart? In this article, we delve into the fascinating realms of Business Analytics vs Data Science and explore the distinctive responsibilities and skills of Business Analysts and Data Scientists. Join us as we unravel the power of data and uncover the nuances between these disciplines, shedding light on their respective contributions in leveraging data to make informed business decisions.

What is Business Analysis?

Business Analytics is the practice of using data analysis and statistical methods to derive meaningful insights and make data-driven decisions that optimize business performance. It involves collecting, organizing, and analyzing data from various sources to identify trends, patterns, and correlations. Business analytics focuses on solving specific business problems, improving efficiency, identifying opportunities, and guiding strategic planning by providing actionable insights and recommendations.

To start your business analytics journey, register for our exclusive course on CBAP!

What is Data Science?

Data Science is a multidisciplinary field that combines statistical analysis, machine learning, data visualization, and computer science to extract knowledge and insights from structured and unstructured data. Data scientists employ a combination of data exploration, data preprocessing, predictive modeling, and data visualization techniques to uncover patterns, make predictions, and gain valuable insights that drive decision-making and solve complex problems across various industries. Data science encompasses the entire data lifecycle, from data collection and cleaning to analysis and interpretation.

The skills and tools required to make a career in Business Analytics and Data Science differ to a great extent. Here is the list of the same for both profiles:

Business Analytics

Business Analytics professionals must be proficient in presenting business simulations and business planning. A large part of their role would be to analyze business trends. For eg, web analytics/pricing analytics.

Some of the tools used extensively in business analytics are Excel, Tableau, SQL, Python. The most commonly used techniques are – Statistical Methods, Forecasting, Predictive Modeling and storytelling.

Data Science

A data scientist must be proficient in Linear algebra, programming, computer science fundamentals. Some examples of data science projects vary from building recommendation engines to personalized E-mails.

The common tools of a data scientist are R, Python, scikit-learn, Keras, PyTorch and the most widely used techniques are Statistics, Machine Learning, Deep Learning, NLP, CV.

And for both the roles, structure thinking, and problem formulation is a key skill to do well in their respective domain.

Data Science vs Business Analytics Business Analyst vs. Data Scientist – Role & Skills

Let us take an example of an exciting electrical vehicle startup. This startup is now big for creating job families. And, they have decided to create three job families, one is a scientist, and the other two are an engineer and a management professional. Now I want you to take time and imagine what kind of role they play in the company.

We can infer their role from the general level of understanding:

Engineer – Take these developments and apply industry techniques to transform them into production. For example, making an assembly line to manufacture these vehicles using the right machinery.

Management – Run the business and solve business-related problems on a day-to-day basis. For example, to find the right market to open a store for the vehicle. Decisions regarding the sales and marketing of these products and many others.

Now, let’s take these roles and convert it to data-based profiles.

Business Analyst vs Data Scientist Data Scientist vs Data Engineer vs Business Analyst

Data Scientist –  He Works on complex and specific problems to bring non-linear growth to the company. For example, making a credit risk solution for the banking industry or use images of vehicles & assess the damage for an insurance company automatically.

Data Engineer – He would Implement the outcomes derived by the data scientist in production by using industry best practices. For example, Deploying the machine learning model built for credit risk modeling on  banking software.

Business Analyst – Run the business and take decisions on a day-to-day basis. He’ll be communicating with the IT side and the business side simultaneously.

This is a very basic analogy that you need to keep in mind to differentiate the role of Data Scientist, Business Analyst, and Data Engineer.

Caution: These terms are losely used in the industry. The exact role can depend on the maturity of your organization in data initiatives.

Now that we have our basic analogy clear, let us see the kinds of problem solved by data scientists and business analysts.

Business Analyst vs Data Scientist – Job Role

To understand the difference between a business analyst and a data scientist, it is imperative to understand the problems or projects they work on. Let us take up an interesting example. Imagine that you are a manager of a bank and you decide to implement two important projects. You have a team of a data scientist and a business analyst. How will you do the project mapping job? Below are two problem statements:

Build a business plan to decide how many employees a bank needs to do XXX business in 2023

Build a model to predict which transaction is Fraudulent

Take your time to understand the problems. What do you think, which problem is best suited for which profile?

The first problem statement requires making several business assumptions and incorporating macro changes into the strategy. This will require more business expertise and decision making, this will be the job of a business analyst.

The second problem statement requires processing vast behavioral data from customers and understanding hidden patterns. For this, the professional should have a very good understanding of problem formulation and algorithms. A data scientist will be a suitable person to tackle this kind of specific and complex problem.

Which Career Path to Choose – Data Science or Business Analytics?

A Data scientist’s strengths lie in coding, mathematics, and research abilities and require continuous learning along the career journey whereas a business analyst needs to be more of a strategic thinker and have a strong ability in project management.

Business Analyst tends to take business roles, strategic roles, and entrepreneurship roles as they progress through career while we notice that data scientist are more of tech entrepreneur roles as they have a strong technical background.

You can refer to the following career path to see a more in-depth route from the start of data science and business analytics journey:

Final Verdict

To further enhance your skills and gain a competitive edge in Business Analytics, consider enrolling in our Certified Business Analytics Professional (CBAP) program. This comprehensive program equips you with the necessary knowledge and practical expertise to become a proficient Business Analyst adept at translating data insights into actionable strategies.

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