Customer Data

Putting Customer Data to Work

by Jenna Sindle

Effective data analytics and processing have changed the game for retailers and are allowing them to glean actionable insights based on concrete trends. However, customer data presents a unique challenge for retailers in that they know they need a ton of it to create those invaluable patterns and make decisions, but tackling the analysis of it can be intimidating to say the least. Not to mention all of the rules and regulations that add an extra layer of complexity and scrutiny to the equation (looking at you, GDPR).

That said, retailers are making moves in adopting data analytics tools to help manage their mountains of customer data that they’ve spent years capturing. So the RTI roundup this week is data-themed and takes a closer look at the double-edged sword that is customer data.

Here are some top industry stories exploring the challenge and opportunity that comes with customer data:

 

Buried in Data? Prescriptive Analytics Helps Fashion Retailers Sift Through the Numbers

In a recent interview with WWD, Profitect CEO Guy Yehiav explains how his team gives retailers access to prescriptive analytics through their software. “We provide retailers with the right action to take in order to minimize confusion around reports. This allows employees — from the executive level down to store associates — to focus on revenue-producing activities,” stated Yehiav.

Yehiav acknowledged that retailers, fashion in particular, deal with an inconceivable amount of data points every day, so how are they able to tell which ones they need to be paying attention to? Prescriptive analytics takes that data one step further and interprets the data and presents users with a next step centered around building and maintaining revenue.

Read the whole story here.

GDPR for Retailers: Thoughts on Compliance, Fines, and Testing the Limits

Just over a month ago, pretty much every industry was undergoing a lot of changes resulting from the General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR. You might remember getting about 100 emails a day explaining how a company has updated their service terms and privacy policy – that’s because of GDPR. In a nutshell, the EU created the regulation to ensure protection and proper use of its citizens’ data, and given that shopping is no longer bound to location and consumers buy items from all over the world, GDPR really pushed pretty much every company to become compliant.

We wanted to dig into this concept a bit deeper with Pitney Bowes’ Doug Harrell and really look at how GDPR affects retailers. Harrell presented an interesting stance, stating that the trade-off for some retailers of putting in the effort and dollars to become compliant could outweigh any resulting fine for being non-compliant. It’s a bit of a dilemma that smaller retailers in particular are likely facing in the wake of the regulation. “These retailers are  more likely to say, ‘you know what, the fine isn’t more than it’s going to take me to be compliant so, I’m not going to invest in those solutions, when I could put that money into my business,” stated Harrell.

However, Harrell went on to explain that a more holistic approach to customer data could really streamline the process and budget needed to become compliant for companies of any size.

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Read the whole story here.

How Retailers Can Make the Most of Their Data

Forbes Contributor Hugo Moreno discussed the challenges retailers face not just when it comes to actually collecting customer data, but the actual processing, scrubbing, and validation of the data. It’s arguable that having bad or useless data is worse than having no data to work with at all, especially if it misinforms retailers in a way that affects their revenue. “…Addressing data-quality issues as customers are acquired is critical to minimize the costs associated with poor data,” he wrote.

Moreno also shared a few other benefits to having and using “clean” data:

  • Increasing average transaction value
  • Location-led strategy and planning
  • Streamlining tax and shipping requirements

Read the whole story here.

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