Effective ways of securely collecting customer data

For companies to succeed, they must be able to deliver value to their customers. This entails having a deep understanding of their clients’ needs and interests by collecting and segmenting customer data. However, they should first ensure that they are compliant with data privacy laws to avoid corresponding fines and penalties. Here are safe and effective ways of collecting customer information.

1. Prioritize security

The IBM Cost of a Data Breach Report found that the global average data breach cost reached $4.24 million in 2021, up by 10% from $3.86 million in 2020. Small- and medium-sized businesses, in particular, lose an average of $120,000 per data breach incident.

To avoid such costs and ensure the safety of customer information, you must invest in modern security systems and train your employees in data privacy best practices.

2. Exercise ethical data collection

You need to be honest and transparent about collecting customer data. This means developing clear privacy policies, allowing customers to choose what information to share, and disclosing how their data will be used.

3. Collect only the data you need

Approximately 60% to 73% of customer information collected by organizations is unused during the analysis process. This flood of data can overwhelm analysts and distract management from making effective decisions. Therefore, before gathering customer data, companies must first decide on the following:

  • What information to prioritize
  • How the information aligns with business objectives
  • How the data will be analyzed
  • How this data can help improve the business

4. Back up all data

All of your customer data collection efforts will go to waste if you lose the data because of cyberattacks, natural disasters, and IT failures, among other disasters. This is why you need to make sure that your business has an effective backup and data recovery plan.

5. Update customer data regularly

Having outdated or incorrect data, such as phone numbers, emails, and addresses, can‌ prevent you from nurturing your relationships with your customers. To prevent this issue, regularly check and delete unnecessary data, duplicates, and inactive contacts.

Collecting and analyzing customer data will greatly benefit your company’s overall marketing strategy. If you’re looking for reliable IT solutions to optimize data collection, give us a call today.

This post was originally published on this site

Improve customer data collection with these tips

As businesses continue to use more apps and tools that allow them to collect, store, and process customer information, the amount of data in their systems grows exponentially. However, not all of the collected information is important or even useful. Gathering more data requires finding a way to keep everything organized and relevant. These tips to improve data collection processes are the best place to start.

Customer data collection offers a suite of business benefits, but there is a limit to what kind of data can be gathered. Customer privacy has become a serious concern in modern society, and there are various regulatory frameworks that ensure the protection of people’s private information. To avoid running afoul of the law, inform your customers that you will be collecting their data, and specify exactly what data you’ll be gathering.

1. Collect identifiers
Whether you’re creating an online survey or a signup form, collecting identifying information (i.e., names, date of birth, age, gender, address, etc.) is crucial. This information will form the foundation for future analysis and segmentation.

2. Track customer interactions
Define important customer interactions. For example, if you own an online store, you need to know how your customers arrived at your site, the items they clicked on, the items they added to their cart, and what they eventually purchased. Tracking each step of their buyer journey — from learning about your business to becoming a customer — will give you insights into what your customers need and want.

3. Gather behavior-related data
Don’t focus solely on customers who made a purchase. Think about what other indicators produce meaningful data. In our online store example, you might want to track how many sign up for your email newsletter, which pages they visited on your site, or how much time they spent on each page. Analyzing this information will help you determine which aspects of your efforts are most effective and which ones need improvement.

4. Automate data collection
When gathering customer data, you must minimize the risk of human error. The most effective strategy is to automate as much of the collection process as possible. Apps and tools such as online forms and optical character recognition systems feed information directly into your database and eliminate paper-centric processes that often lead to mistakes.

5. Integrate your systems
Redundancies and errors are also common when there are multiple databases managing the same information. You can prevent these issues by working with an IT provider to integrate all your apps, databases, and software solutions. This way, data collected in one database will be synced and consistent across other platforms, reducing manual data entry and, consequently, human error.

6. Consider who will view the reports
Inevitably, you’ll need to convert data into business intelligence reports. It’s a good idea to identify who will read your reports so you can highlight the most relevant insights for them. For instance, sales managers want to see quarterly sales figures, and human resources teams want to see labor costs compared to revenue.

7. Update data in real time
Companies today need up-to-the-minute data accuracy in order to stay relevant. Use business intelligence dashboards that collect, organize, and filter data at the click of a button so that you’ll never have to wait a day or more to receive critical information that can guide company decisions.

Looking for technologies that can help you optimize data collection? Call our IT consultants today. We’ll recommend best-of-breed technologies that track the information you need to grow your business.

This post was originally published on this site

Improve customer data collection with these tips

As businesses continue to use more apps and tools that allow them to collect, store, and process customer information, the amount of data in their systems grows exponentially. However, not all of the collected information is important or even useful. Gathering more data requires finding a way to keep everything organized and relevant. These tips to improve data collection processes are the best place to start.

Customer data collection offers a suite of business benefits, but there is a limit to what kind of data can be gathered. Customer privacy has become a serious concern in modern society, and there are various regulatory frameworks that ensure the protection of people’s private information. To avoid running afoul of the law, inform your customers that you will be collecting their data, and specify exactly what data you’ll be gathering.

1. Collect identifiers
Whether you’re creating an online survey or a signup form, collecting identifying information (i.e., names, date of birth, age, gender, address, etc.) is crucial. This information will form the foundation for future analysis and segmentation.

2. Track customer interactions
Define important customer interactions. For example, if you own an online store, you need to know how your customers arrived at your site, the items they clicked on, the items they added to their cart, and what they eventually purchased. Tracking each step of their buyer journey — from learning about your business to becoming a customer — will give you insights into what your customers need and want.

3. Gather behavior-related data
Don’t focus solely on customers who made a purchase. Think about what other indicators produce meaningful data. In our online store example, you might want to track how many sign up for your email newsletter, which pages they visited on your site, or how much time they spent on each page. Analyzing this information will help you determine which aspects of your efforts are most effective and which ones need improvement.

4. Automate data collection
When gathering customer data, you must minimize the risk of human error. The most effective strategy is to automate as much of the collection process as possible. Apps and tools such as online forms and optical character recognition systems feed information directly into your database and eliminate paper-centric processes that often lead to mistakes.

5. Integrate your systems
Redundancies and errors are also common when there are multiple databases managing the same information. You can prevent these issues by working with an IT provider to integrate all your apps, databases, and software solutions. This way, data collected in one database will be synced and consistent across other platforms, reducing manual data entry and, consequently, human error.

6. Consider who will view the reports
Inevitably, you’ll need to convert data into business intelligence reports. It’s a good idea to identify who will read your reports so you can highlight the most relevant insights for them. For instance, sales managers want to see quarterly sales figures, and human resources teams want to see labor costs compared to revenue.

7. Update data in real time
Companies today need up-to-the-minute data accuracy in order to stay relevant. Use business intelligence dashboards that collect, organize, and filter data at the click of a button so that you’ll never have to wait a day or more to receive critical information that can guide company decisions.

Looking for technologies that can help you optimize data collection? Call our IT consultants today. We’ll recommend best-of-breed technologies that track the information you need to grow your business.

This post was originally published on this site