How Getting to Know Your Customers Can Boost Business Success

Optimize your business operations and level up your sales by learning more about your customers and how they interact with your business.

In this era, businesses — no matter the size or industry — consider data as one of their most important tools. It’s through collected data that organizations are able to analyze customer patterns and behavior and draw insights to help move their business forward.

Simply put, it’s the information we collect from our customers that allow us to get to know them better.

When we understand our customers, we can make informed decisions on how we can improve our services and products. More importantly, we can learn how to optimize our marketing strategies to engage current customers better, and target a bigger audience of potential customers.

Thankfully these days, we no longer need shelves of logbooks, reams of survey materials, and Rolodexes (do you even remember what those are?) to gather and collate information about our customers. There are plenty of tools and strategies accessible even for one-person startups.

Now, what sorts of data can you collect? How can you use this information? And what tools do you need to collect them?

Transactional Data

What it is: This is the information you collect every time a customer pays you for goods or services. With every transaction, you learn the following:

And if you run an e-commerce business, you also get to record who makes these purchases, and where they purchased from.

How you can use this information: First, you can get insights on your products — learn about the top- and lowest-sellers, and update your inventory accordingly. You can also deduce your peak and slow seasons (plus top locations), and plan your sales and promos, and manpower requirements efficiently around them.

Additionally, you can also get insights on service-related processes like payment methods and see how else you can serve your customers better, e.g. will adding GCash make you more accessible to more customers and increase sales?

The tools you need: You can set up a POS (point-of-sale) system with a POS software for Cloud on an iPad. With this software, you’ll be able to sync your brick-and-mortar store transactions with your e-commerce transactions and keep and analyze all your transactional data in one place.

In-Store Data

What it is: It’s the information you can record from in-store traffic of your brick-and-mortar store. From here you can learn about the following:

How you can use this information: Collecting in-store data doesn’t just inform you of you’re selling to, it also tells you if you’re selling to them is actually working. Learn about your store’s “shelf health” or the success of your retail environment based on layout, design and accessibility. With this information, you can monitor locations of products and displays, and see how your customers respond to these and how you position and execute your promotional materials. Plus, you can use these insights to optimize your manpower schedules and promotions.

The tools you need: For smaller stores, manual observation can be enough to keep track of your shelf health. But you might want to set up CCTVs not just for security purposes but also for reference. You can also add Broadband with a static IP and be able to monitor your business in realtime, from anywhere!

You can also get customers to give feedback or respond to surveys by having them conveniently fill out a Google Form on a tablet. The Form will then gather all responses onto a Sheet, making it easy for you to analyze the collected information.

Online Marketing Analytics

What it is: This is your web traffic or the information you collect when customers visit your website. It’s a collection of anonymized demographic data of your visitors (age, gender, location), where they come from (referrals from Facebook, Instagram, online ads, etc.) and how they behave on your site, e.g. which buttons they click on, and how they interact with your products.

How you can use this information: Learn about how to target your online customers more effectively and efficiently, budget your spend on each channel (Facebook ads, etc.) depending on which ones actually deliver, and plan your promotions based on the preferences of your most engaged users.

The tool you need: Connect your site to Google Analytics. It’s free and there’s plenty of data that can be collected and analyzed from this platform. Some of them might not be needed yet, but will be in the future. Make sure you have your Analytics calibrated correctly and that your team is able to extract information for future analysis. Not sure how to do this? Learn all about it on Google Analytics Academy, for free!

Bonus: Get insights into the spending habits of your consumers with a rewards program.

Creating a loyalty program works two amazing ways: 1) yes, you reward your customers for repeat/frequent purchases, and thus 1.5) encourage repeat/frequent purchase and boost sales, and 2) you get customer-level visibility of how, when, and what they’re buying.

The great thing is, you don’t need to be a huge supermarket chain to have a great rewards program, there are accessible platforms, like Rush, that you can use to launch and run your own program.

Rush lets you conveniently develop and deploy your own loyalty program in as fast as 10 days — it’s highly customizable, so you can always align your program with your business goals; and, you can seamlessly integrate it to your POS system.

Tip: you should also aim to get extra loyalty and affinity points from your customers by rewarding them for giving you information, e.g. offer a discount on their next purchase when they complete a feedback form.

Now you know what data to collect and what tools to use to collect them, always make sure that they sign off on a data privacy clause that guarantees the safety of the information you collect from them.

Want to learn more about how Google Forms (plus the whole of Google Workspace – previously known as G Suite) and Rush can help you improve your business? Talk to us!

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