“Descriptive Analytics: insight into the past
Which use data aggregation and data mining techniques to provide insight into the past and answer: “What has happened?”
Use Descriptive statistics when you need to understand at an aggregate level what is going on in your company, and when you want to summarize and describe different aspects of your business.
Predictive Analytics: understanding the future
Which use statistical models and forecasts techniques to understand the future and answer: “What could happen?”
Use Predictive analysis any time you need to know something about the future, or fill in the information that you do not have.
Prescriptive Analytics: advise on possible outcomes
Which use optimization and simulation algorithms to advice on possible outcomes and answer: “What should we do?
Use prescriptive statistics anytime you need to provide users with advice on what action to take.”
Ray Major ( October 8, 2014 )