Retail is a driving force in the U.S. and, increasingly, the global economy. With total retail sales in the U.S. topping out at $4.53 trillion in 2013, there is every indication that the sector will remain a major component of the economy. Today, retailers have access to an ocean of customer data obtained from scores of technologically-enabled tools. “Thorough collection and analysis of customer data will give retailers the best chance to understand, anticipate and adapt to the continuous change that comes with the connected consumer,” states Deloitte’s most recent Global Powers of Retailing Report. “Information is king, and the use of predictive analytics can help retailers gain deeper insight into the value that is being generated for their customers.”
The idea of harnessing the power of big data or predictive analytics has been championed by technology experts from a range of commercial industries, and some organizations are implementing data analytics methodologies to drive decision making across product development, marketing, and other business units. One such company is the well-known eyewear retailer, Warby Parker. In a recent interview in Data Science Weekly, Director of Data Science, Carl Anderson, shared how his company effectively utilizes data to drive sales and deliver customer satisfaction.
Anderson expressed that “getting data into databases, creating a single source of truth, and creating an accurate catalog” are Warby Parker’s major goals for utilizing data analytics in the near term. “We are going to focus a lot more on understanding the customer. Who are they and what makes them tick? What’s the relationship between online and offline experiences? We will marry sources such as clickstream, transactional history, in-store analytics and social media,” Anderson went on to say. These tactics are helping Warby Parker shift to become a “data-driven organization” – a designation that will improve the company’s position in the market by providing their end consumer with a tailored and powerful experience.
Other organizations that have embraced a data-driven approach run the gamut from large enterprises to niche retailers. Some of the best examples include big names such as The Hershey Company, Dunkin’ Brands, and AT&T. Small scale business can benefit greatly from being in on the data action too, even if they’re considered a traditional brick and mortar operation. This summer, businesses will convene in Chicago for the Big Data & Analytics for Retail Summit. The aim of this major event is to “bring together analytics executives and data scientists working in retail, eCommerce and consumer goods [to] offer… unique insight into the innovations that are driving success in these industries.” Retail-focused organizations are discovering that harnessing data analytics will help to drive business.
Praescient Analytics is a Veteran-Owned Small Business that delivers training, data integration, platform customization, and embedded analytical services in partnership with leading technology providers. Praescient’s teams of analysts and engineers provide comprehensive solutions to federal and commercial clients engaged in critical defense, law enforcement, intelligence, cyber security, financial, investigative, and legal analytics missions.
Charlotte Stasio is Praescient’s Communications Specialist.