Retail stores no longer need to rely on blanket advertising, sales, and coupon offers to target potential customers. Retailers are now able to send ads and offers that specifically target individual consumer preferences and environments. Stores are accomplishing this individualized messaging by tracking their customers with the help of big data and analytics. Tracking customer purchases, social media information, and mobile use gives retailers all the information needed to provide a better shopping experience and increase sales.
Analyzing Customer Purchases
Consumer online purchases are a major part of analytics for retailers. A customer’s purchase history can provide an excellent picture of the individual’s interests, habits, and needs. Big data helps companies use the information that can be found in millions of these consumer pictures. In return, the retailer has an excellent way to predict what products should be targeted to each individual consumer.
Predictive analytics allows retailers to track purchase histories and target individual consumers with a variety of meaningful messages. Businesses can use the tracking information to offer customers:
- Suggestions of relevant items for purchase
- Useful coupons for items likely to be of interest
- Personalized notifications of upcoming sales events for these items
Properly predicting what items, coupons, or sales events will result in customer purchases is achieved through analysis of big data. Companies such as Treasure Data are offering retailers analytics solutions that track millions of customer purchases in order to make these predictions as accurate as possible.
Big Data and Social Media
Blanket email blasts are a thing of the past for savvy retailers. Businesses can use analytics and social media to target individuals with messages that will be meaningful to them. Customers today follow or like products and companies on social networks, and big data can predict how these customers will behave based on their related social media activities.
Tracking consumer social media behavior provides retailers with a wealth of information for analysis. As a result, each customer can receive retailer messages specifically targeted to their preferences.
Tracking Mobile Activities
Mobile devices allow retailers to accomplish instant targeted messages to consumers. Retailers use big data to predict purchases for consumers and track customer visits to stores through their mobile devices. When a customer is tracked to a section of the store that is shown to be relevant to the customer through predictive analytics, the retailer can send instant coupons for products in that section.
The use of mobile devices as well as social media can be even further expanded for customers willing to “sign in” at retail stores and have their activities analyzed. Analytics using these methods as well as purchase history will continue to benefit businesses through better marketing and increased sales, offering consumers the advantage of finding deals on products that are useful to them.