You’ve probably heard of analytics before. It’s an incredibly powerful tool that helps you understand how your business interacts with customers. In this post, we’ll focus on analytics that looks at physical customer interactions. However, there are a huge number of online tools that we’ll touch on as well.
Most businesses already do some kind of analytics, even if they don’t call it that. You probably have busier days and quieter days, and you probably know which times of day are busiest and what products are your most popular. You may have even noticed that business goes down when the weather is bad or if it is good. This is the basic premise of analytics, working out when you get the most customers, and why those times are most popular. Once you’ve analyzed that data you can determine ways of increasing customers at other times.
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How Can I Collect This Kind of Data?
Any successful business collects data on the number of sales. Adding greater resolution to that data by tracking the exact times of sales and graphing them allows a much more nuanced appraisal. There are tools available that will automatically log this kind of data for you. We sell and provide service for the Clover Point of Sale system, which comes with an extensive app market. Among these apps are tools that can help you identify particularly busy periods and particularly quiet periods.
The real value to you as a business owner comes with the way you use all this insight. For example, if you knew that your business dropped 20% when it was raining, you could send out a notification to signed-up customers alerting them to a “rainy day special” giving them a discount. Alternatively, if you know that regulars are coming to your restaurant on Friday nights, but new local numbers go down? You could use this data to run a local marketing campaign online or through traditional media.
If your customers are signed up to a loyalty program, you can send them loyalty and marketing offers directly, and because their purchases are logged when they use their loyalty card, you know what they like to buy. This means you can target them with unobtrusive ads and offers for things you know they’re likely to find helpful. This makes them much more likely to click through and buy.
We mentioned that the Clover app market includes apps that can help with analytics; it also includes loads of tools that allow you to set up and run customer loyalty programmes.
What About Online Sales?
Online is where analytics really comes into its own. The ability to easily add tracking tools to web pages means you can gather really detailed data about visitors. Services like Google have hugely powerful tools which allow the use of this data to serve ads to people who match the profile of your target market. In this case, you may not be collecting customer data yourself, but buying Google’s ad services to advertise to potential customers.
For example, say you run a real estate business, and you’re looking to advertise to people moving out of the city because they’re now working from home. You could use Google’s analytics to target those who have been looking at houses in your area, but whose IP address (the code that identifies every computer connected to the internet) says they live in another part of the country. Additionally, you could narrow this down to just people who are likely to have a high disposable income and are of a certain age, to ensure that your ads are as successful as possible.
We at Cornerstone Credit Services have experience in the physical customer analytics that you need to really unlock the power of your customer data. We also stock and provide customer service for Clover POS products, which are a great entry point for unlocking the power of customer analytics.
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