If you’re a brick-and-mortar retailer, you already realized that your customers needed to find you online so you opened an online store. Your online presence broadened your reach and generated tons and tons of customer data.
Now that you’re gathering all that glorious data, you may have a creeping suspicion that you’re not extracting its full potential. This hunch isn’t lost on eCommerce businesses either. It’s challenging to manage, maintain, and extract value from customer data.
Not to add insult to injury, but guess what? Time really is of the essence here because all that first-party data will become increasingly valuable as cookies go away.
Consumers are continuing to call the shots in this era of digital transformation and only truly customer-centric brands will survive. So, where does your brand stand in all of this?
Consumers Now Dictate the Path to Purchase
The traditional path to purchase has been disrupted with the balance of power skewing in the consumers’ favor. Overwhelmed by the “tyranny of choice,” consumers opt to research purchases on their own, usually through comparison websites or social media influencers.
Today’s consumers aren’t waiting to be inspired by a brand’s marketing messages. Instead, they opt to tap perceived experts to guide them on what products and experiences they should engage with, thus determining their interactions with brands.
As consumers increasingly hold the reigns of what marketing messages they listen to, frustration may ensue if their personalized objectives are not addressed when engaging with retailers. The result? A consumer that is quick to switch brands and tell their friends about their bad experiences.
Most retailers have been slow to respond, still stuck in their old ways of pushing traditional advertising. It’s time for retailers to consider their customers as potential brand enthusiasts by influencing prospective buyers.
To achieve this collaborative partnership, retailers must invest in understanding their audience. Yes, but how? It comes down to making data-driven decisions that drive highly personalized customer experiences.
Data Collection Requires a New Playbook
Although your onsite associates have insight into your loyal customer base and may even recall the regular faces by name, you still aren’t capturing meaningful data about your customers. While collecting customer data is a positive, it often creates a data management nightmare for retailers.
De-tangling the data to make it valuable, all while being sensitive to privacy concerns, is a major challenge. One of the most common issues we see is retailers capturing incomplete or messy data that is rendered unusable.
What’s worse? Collecting data from your customers that results in annoyance rather than more meaningful communications. Retailers must use data productively with an eye to build lasting customer relationships rather than short-term monetization. This requires careful consideration of privacy more than ever before.
Knowing more about your customers allows you to segment your customer base into groups of individuals that share similarities, such as age, interests, and spending habits that guide your communications, including:
- Personalized services and products.
- Tailored product recommendations.
- Meaningful special offers.
- Contextualized communication based on experience (online, email, SMS, app, in-store).
Impactful communications with your audience creates a more loyal customer base. Additionally, it encourages those who are already repeat customers to become brand enthusiasts.
How to Harness Your Customer Data Superpowers
Understand that consumers are in the power position. Increasingly, consumers expect to have control over their data and how it’s collected and used. To get started playing to the good side of the consumer, take these steps to harness your customer data superpowers.
Put Your Customer at the Center of Everything
Bombarded with choice 24/7, the consumer’s journey is full of distractions and interruptions. Speaking to your customers as people instead of dollars requires a shift in mindset. Using data allows you to gain insights into the consumer’s point-of-view, needs, and desires at every stage of the customer lifecycle.
Approaching communications through a consumer-centric lens involves elevating the customer experience at every touchpoint and honoring each individual customer’s preferences on data privacy. Once you put your customer at the center of everything you do, success abounds.
Enable a Mobile-First Strategy
Your customers may do a fair bit of comparison shopping while on the go. Additionally, as consumers are introduced to brands by social media channels, such as Instagram, they may stumble across a good or service that piques their interest while using their mobile. Deploying a mobile-first strategy improves customer data capture and engagement.
Break Down Data Silos
Data you collect about your customers most likely exists within different tools or technologies. Integrating data is crucial. Capture, connect, and activate information about your customers to understand their preferences and needs better using customer 360 capabilities inside of a customer data platform (CDP).
A CDP gives you all the tools you need to segment your customers and consolidate data frameworks. Build cohorts of customers to understand similarities between groups, lending predictive insights to meet their demands, such as product recommendations and personalized offers on one platform.
Meet Customers Where They Are
The customer’s journey is complex. Gain a keyhole with real-time engagement powered by data-driven insights and multichannel touch points, such as web, social, campaigns, and in-store.
Each interaction with your brand is an opportunity to delight your audience with a personalized experience. Integrating siloed data and honoring data privacy is central to a brand’s competitive advantage.
Skypoint’s CDP does both. Using identity resolution to connect and consolidate data from various systems, Skypoint enables brands to model their data, making it more consistent, accurate, and impactful—all while ensuring data privacy.
Squeeze more than short-term monetization out of your customer’s data. Learn how our customer data platform integrates siloed data, allowing you to act on building long-term customer relationships and future success.