Retail customers today are in the driver’s seat when it comes to making purchasing decisions. They have access to multiple sources of information to comparison shop and obtain feedback on products and services before buying them. In addition, they are accessing this information through multiple channels including the store, social networks, online, direct mail, and mobile devices.
Retailers are struggling with how to embrace today’s customer and find ways to more accurately service them with offers that meet their specific needs, delivered via their medium of choice.
Correcting the root of this problem begins with having accurate customer data and establishing processes for managing enterprise data. However, customer data often resides in several different silos within each part of an organization and the data quality may not be good enough for the retailer to make informed decisions. This can lead to missed opportunities, loss of revenue and low level of customer experience.
Successful retailers understand the importance of creating a great customer experience and to do this effectively, they have to manage customer data in real-time across the enterprise.
Enterprise data management focuses on the ability of an organization to precisely define, easily integrate and effectively retrieve data for both internal applications and external communication.
The key to effective data management is proper data governance. This requires a collaborative effort among people, processes and technology that aligns with your corporate culture. There are five steps to ensuring proper data governance:
- Identify and assess the current state of your data.
- Define business-related data quality rules, measurements, and set performance targets.
- Design quality improvement processes that remediate process flaws.
- Move data quality improvement methods and processes into production.
- Inspect, monitor, and remediate when data quality is not acceptable.
Customer data is the most valuable asset of any retailer and is the foundation for building lifetime customer relationships. By following these steps and implementing an effective enterprise data management approach, you can achieve a more accurate view of your customer and create lifetime value.