Thanks to technology, everyday living seemed to have progressed quite exceedingly—especially for entrepreneurs. Several businesses today are relying more and more on technology to help them outperform competitors and improve their services. If you want your business to continually grow, you’ll need a powerful marketing strategy.
This is where customer data comes in.
Customer data is vital if you want to provide a great customer experience. It is important to know your customer’s preferences, interests, and goals by getting a broad spectrum of information about your customers.
No matter the industry you work in, the demographic of your target market or the range of services offered, collecting information about your clients helps in the progress of every aspect of your business.
Companies these days collect and store relevant customer data as part of their marketing strategy. But, most of them don’t use this data efficiently to improve their business. They have the customer-generated data yet spend money, time and effort on marketing strategies that don’t align with their target audience or their brand objectives.
In this article, we’ll share what customer data is exactly and how you can use it to your advantage. We’ll discuss the purpose of collecting customer’s data and how companies utilize it to leverage their success.
Let’s get started!
Why Collect Data?
Data collection is a vital part of any business marketing strategy. It allows you to store and analyze crucial information about your buyers. This will give you an opportunity to build a database of customers for future marketing.
Additionally, it is an inexpensive and uncomplicated way to learn more about your target demographic. As you gain more insight, you get to figure out how to resolve issues more efficiently and improve the quality of your product or service based on the feedback obtained from your existing buyers.
Before we go deeper into different data collection strategies, let’s briefly differentiate the four main types of data collection.
Types of consumer data businesses collect
If you want to stay competitive, you have to embrace the power of customer-generated data. Each time a customer engages with your brand, they always leave a bit of breadcrumb. These bits of details say something about your customer and help you to create a valuable customer profile that you can use to your advantage.
Generally, there are four different types of customer data that companies collect, and each serves its purpose. Collecting all the needed information will help you get a firm grasp of the problems that your customers encounter frequently with your services.
The following types of customer data are instrumental in interpreting how your business impacts consumers and determining how to use them suitably. Below are four types of customer data for your business analysis.
Basic or personal data
This type of customer data includes personally identifiable information such as:
- Phone number
- Email address including your
- IP address
- wWeb browser cookies
- Device IDs
If you have enough basic data collected, you can start to piece together the demographics of your customers. Demographic data is helpful because you can use it for different customers or group customers based on shared attributes.
Engagement data or interaction data provides ideas on how consumers interact with:
- Business’s website
- Mobile apps
- How often they like or share content on social media pages
- Emails (Subscriptions, Open rates, Responses)
- Paid ads
- Customer service routes.
It measures how existing and potential customers interact with your brand or product. Also, it shows how your clients engage with your brand across various touchpoints. Engagement data can assess click-through rates along with the number of shares, retweets, and reactions you are getting on social media.
Behavioral data includes transactional details such as:
- Purchase histories
- Product usage information (e.g., repeated actions like repurchases)
- Qualitative data (e.g. mouse movement information)
- Features customers are using
- How they use it
- Login patterns
This type of data refers to the information a customer reveals while interacting with your core product or service directly. Behavioral data is the most useful data when it comes to knowing the efficiency of your services, or the appeal of your products. This is clearly the result of your product’s performance and capacity to live up to expectations, as reviewed by your end-users.
Attitudinal data aids in understanding customers’ motivation, opinions, preferences, and overall attitude towards your brand. This type of data showcases metrics through the following:
- Consumer satisfaction
- Purchase criteria
- Product desirability
- Customer feedback
- Success stories
- Challenges and motivation
Also called qualitative data, it is often difficult to assess this information. For example, if you have tons of five-star reviews, it doesn’t outweigh the outcome of a single, scathing one-star review from an angry customer. This is exactly why it is necessary to encourage customers to leave a review. Doing so gives you a better eye for your upcoming marketing campaigns and rebranding your products (in case the need arises.)
Best Ways to Collect Customer Data
The main objective of collecting customer data is to gather essential and authentic proof that answers all the questions people have about a business’s services, products, and goals. Through careful information collection, businesses are faced with facts and experience-based conclusions on how to enhance their services as a whole.
To improve the quality of data, it is expedient that information is collected so that you simply can draw inferences and make the right choices on what is considered factual.
Doing so can essentially streamline your email list, create phenomenal strides in your client retention, and boost your ad campaigns.
In line with that, here are excellent strategies for gathering client data:
Website Analytics Tools
Web analytics tools such as Google Analytics allow you to collect business insights for improving your marketing strategies. You’ll be able to see what echoes well with your audience through measurements reflecting their engagement and purchasing behavior. This information is typically represented by, but is not limited to page views, the amount of time they spend on your website or page, as well as bounce rate.
By providing resources, information, and entertainment for your customers, you can monitor which keywords are driving conversions and consequently base your content marketing materials on that.
Analytics assists you in understanding your customers’ journey and distinguishing the foremost frequent issues they encounter. Moreover, you can utilize analytics to foresee the behavior of potential clients based on past user activities and be better geared to assist them and turn them into regular patrons.
Conducting surveys among those who completed an action with your business (such as email subscription or purchase) is an excellent way to collect data out of your customers. You can extract additional data about them, (civil status, interests, income) and get a general picture of your target audience and potential customers.
With online surveys, the turnaround is speedy and tracking respondents is also simple. It’s an inexpensive way to reach your audience using any platform they use. You can use surveys to collect either quantitative or qualitative data. You can conduct surveys online, either through email, social media comments, or send surveys individually through a private message. One of the easiest strategies is to create an online survey on your website. You’ll be able to share a link to that survey on social media, over email, and in pop-ups on your site.
Signup forms are one of the easiest ways to gather basic customer data. These forms not only help you generate leads but also capture basic information about your target demographic. Signup forms are known for being wholeheartedly embraced by most marketing agencies and companies who have had effective marketing strategies.
Exclusive interviews are an incredible way to fill the gaps left by signup forms, surveys, or online reviews. Most client or customer interviews are conducted through phone calls, online video chats, follow-up emails, or a face-to-face meeting.
Of all these interview methods, phone interviews are considered by many to be among the most low-cost and less time-consuming ways to reach out to your clients. Meanwhile, face-to-face interviews communicate beyond words. You can see the honesty and legitimacy of a customer’s reaction through their non-verba cues.
Social Media Engagement
Social media is an excellent source of consumer data. You can check who follows your business page and use that discovery to enhance your understanding of the characteristics that make up your community of customers. You can always ask your customers to follow your page, especially on social media platforms. The act of simply “liking” your page empowers you to discover the fundamental statistical data from your followers, and that includes their gender, age range, cities, or dialect spoken.
How do businesses utilize customer data?
Collecting information is important since you’ll utilize it to create informed decisions. The more relevant, high-quality information you have, the more likely you’re to create great choices when it comes to marketing, deals, customer service, product advancement, and numerous other ranges of your trade.
How do businesses utilize customer-generated data?
Improve customer experience
Like other aspects of analytics, marketing is becoming more about personalization. For numerous businesses, customer data offers a way to understand customers better and meet their client’s demands. By analyzing client behavior, along with their reviews and feedback, companies can adjust their digital presence, merchandise, or administrative operations to suit the current marketplace.
Consumers’ data are not just there to improve shopper experiences as a whole, but they utilize information moreover to form decisions on an individualized level. One of the most imperative sources of powerful marketing strategies comes from understanding customer data and using it to improve a website’s functionality.
Your customer support operations can be revamped to improve customer experience in the form of customized promotions and extraordinary offers based on clients’ data. Since each customer likely has their individual preferences, personalization is the key.
Refine marketing strategies
Contextualized data can offer assistance to companies to understand how consumers are engaging and reacting to their marketing campaigns, and then alter it accordingly. This will give businesses an idea as to what shoppers want based on what they have tried and purchased beforehand.
Also, personalizing the journey of your client by going beyond your website and incorporating social media platforms like YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, or Facebook is now essential. Segmenting data effectively allows you to advertise to an individual you know is most likely to engage. As such, you open up new opportunities especially if you belong to an industry where showcasing services and capturing audience interest has been known to be a challenge.
Identify areas for improvement and expansion
Collecting and analyzing information helps you recognize whether your company is doing well or if there is room for improvement. It can also reveal opportunities for growing your business.
For example, value-based points of interest can show you which of your products are the most popular and which ones don’t offer much in terms of customer interest and sales. Knowing your business’s strong and weak areas will lead your team to focus more on producing items that are comparable to the biggest brands in the market. Moreover, you can verify client complaints about a product to see which viewpoints are causing problems.
Customer info is additionally valuable for distinguishing expansion opportunities. Say that you want to run an e-commerce trade. If you check accumulated feedback and customer preferences, you’ll see where your clients are and launch your store in a zone with a high concentration of new prospects.
Secure more data
Some businesses utilize customers’ information as a means of securing confidential details about them. For example, banking institutions sometimes utilize voice acknowledgment data to authorize a client to get their financial information or secure them from fraudulent endeavors attempting to steal their information.
These frameworks work by marrying information from a customer’s interaction with a customer support, machine learning calculations, and following advanced mechanisms that can recognize and detect possible scam or fraud attempts on a customer’s account.
As more and more innovations are patterned to ease up customer data collection and analysis, companies become better equipped to harness essential information for future marketing strategies. For businesses, doing so is fundamental to remain competitive in the long run.
Indeed, customer data provides a way for businesses to make better decisions and provide better customer experience. It’s time that you leverage it to provide exceptional service that exceeds customer expectations.
Trends in gathering user data have undergone a gigantic change over the years. The products and brands that people preferred in the past may not necessarily stand true today. In a competitive market, where unpredictable changes always happen, businesses are required to come up with new ways to lure and retain target audiences.
If you fail to understand your customers and their pain points, you are just wasting your effort. Remember, when customers feel they are not valued or understood they will quickly switch to your competitor and less likely return.
Table of Contents
- Why Collect Data?
- Types of consumer data businesses collect
- Best Ways to Collect Customer Data
- How do businesses utilize customer data?
- How do businesses utilize customer-generated data?