What is Customer Analytics?

Felicia Dye

Customer analytics is a system employed to allow businesses to make decisions based on details about their customers. This system can be very beneficial because it helps companies make informed choices instead of potentially devastating guesses. Decisions that may be affected by customer analytics include site locations, shipment quantities, and marketing.

Businessman with a briefcase
Businessman with a briefcase

Various companies have different customer analysis strategies. Some conduct in-store surveys or include requests for information inside of product packages. Others use the Internet or their customer service hot lines to gather information.

The types of data gathered can vary depending on what a company wants to know. A company may wish to find out how far the average customer drives to shop at its store. This can be ascertained by having the cashiers ask for a postal code or telephone number.

Companies may also wish to find out about the lives of their customers. This could include race, gender, and religion. These factors can greatly affect how a company does business. Many companies have found, for instance, that their products tend to sell better if their advertisements and in-store displays mirror the ethnic majority of shoppers. It may be only due to customer analytics that a suffering grocery store realizes it is in a predominately Muslim area and therefore needs more halaal products.

Customer analytics may also be employed with the aim of deciphering the income and interests of a consumer base. This can help a company determine an average of disposable income and to identify opportunities for new revenue streams. It may also be found that current markets are suffering because the items or pricing in an area are beyond the financial reach of the consumer base.

Municipalities also use customer analytics. Doing so can help them understand their communities. This may be essential when approving business or land use permits. For example, information that reveals a town is predominately composed of conservative Christians may prevent local officials from approving the licensing of an adult entertainment venue.

Customer analytics can also help municipalities identify market gaps that may hinder their goals. When organizers plan large events such as a World Cup or Olympics competition, there are often criteria that need to be met for a location to be considered. This is also true when corporations plan to open factories or other large business facilities. These types of businesses can benefit a municipality by bringing in large revenues. Municipalities, therefore, often rely on customer analytics to comply with standards and identify areas of improvement that may make their locations more attractive.

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