Pursuit of the single customer view – success factors (part 2/2)


In part 1 of this blog we talked about the single customer view and despite the potentially painful process of integrating, cleaning and refining customer data, it can transform the success of marketing communications.

Providing a tailored and memorable customer experience in our onmi-channel world has never been more important. To stand out in a crowded space and command the time and engagement of your target audience, it’s important to make best use of the data you have.

Combining insight about interactions, browsing behaviour, conversions and social engagement is the essence of creating a single customer view. So, how do we get there? Simple – with 3 key success factors.

  1. Deciding on the business goals

Crucial to any strategic business change is deciding on the goals of the activity. What is it you hope to gain from going to the trouble of integrating data and how do you measure that? One possible answer could be to improve customer service satisfaction levels across multiple channels. With a single customer view, customer service responses can be personal and meaningful, resulting in possible uplift in customer lifetime value and retention.

  1. Get the teams and technology talking

Data often exists in silos within different systems that aren’t integrated with each other or in silos in different teams within the organisation. This situation is often the product of an organic business evolution, but knowing the data sources available to you at the outset will greatly improve the success of the project. For example, do you have multiple CRM systems each with a different business purpose recording / collecting  / managing data? Does your website track browsing behaviour with cookies and can that data be integrated with the system driving the user login area on the site? Do offline interactions happen and can they be adapted to gather personal data in a digital way?

  1. Accurate tracking and analytics

Mapping the customer journey from awareness to conversion to retention will help identify where and how data can be collected. Multi-channel and multi-device tracking can most simply be achieved by offering all users (including those who aren’t yet converted in customers) ways of logging into a site. Even the smallest data capture form to set up an account is the start of building a profile about each individual engaging with the business.

I never cease to be impressed by the results of achieving a true single customer view. So, here are some great examples of organisations making the best use of their integrated customer data.


John Lewis single customer viewThe John Lewis Loyalty Scheme facilitates a joined up customer experience between store and online. They offer a digital version of the customer’s loyalty card through their app, in addition to the plastic card, to maximise loyalty-linked purchases. This allows as much data as possible to be gathered at the point of sale, plus receipts and guarantees are automatically uploaded customer’s online account. They’ve used customer profiles and a selection of rewards to drive local footfall that could amount to 5 million extra purchase visits (but it’s not clear over how long). (Photo cred: retail-week.com)


Gousto single customer viewGousto knows how, when and what you’re cooking. When you buy a grocery box subscription, the traditional recipe cards can be delivered through the app. This delivers data back to Gousto about your favourite dishes, ingredients and how cooking fits into your daily life. It opens up possibilities of providing dietary information, allergen warnings and understanding how the audience responds to seasonal changes in food. It also allows the business to be responsive in its offering, easily switch up menu options and ultimately improve profitability. (photo cred: essential-retail.com)


Amazon single customer viewAmazon – the master of the single customer view. We’ve all seen how well they personalise product recommendations and it’s down to the collection of a vast amount of data about your browsing, purchasing and wish list habits (among other indicators). But how do they resolve the issue of gift purchases skewing an individual profile? One step towards improving this experience is the ‘edit recommendations’ feature that allows you to manually remove these products from being suggested to you in the future.


If you’re struggling with how you can achieve a single customer view, talk to us about data integration.


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