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Retailers looking to data to gain a holistic view of customers

Rachel Wheeler Archive
Faced with the competition of ecommerce companies that have easy access to customer analytics generated by clicks and hovers, brick-and-mortar businesses are looking for new ways to capture data about consumers. In fact, a recent study by Edgell Knowledge Network revealed that 70 percent of retailers are aware of big data, but so far, only 5 percent have already implemented strategies.

This low adoption can be blamed on a number of factors - a lack of understanding, a shortage of tools or an unwillingness to spend money. However, it looks like most of these factors are being dissolved as big data becomes less of an untapped weapon and more of an everyday tool.

As an example of these burgeoning solutions, two tech companies - Irisys and WirelessWERX - recently collaborated to provide retailers with tools that can measure customer behavior through front-end traffic counts and data captured at point-of-sale terminals. This could ultimately help businesses make better decisions about staffing, customer experiences and marketing, said Jon Rosen, executive vice president of corporate development for WirelessWERX.

"We're seeing a big demand in global retailers looking for this data to drive merchandising and process improvements, increasing performance at departmental levels. With a total picture of customer behavior and repeat visits, retailers can maximize the effectiveness of the entire store," Rosen added.

When merchants develop strong big data strategies that harness the right information and use the proper data quality tools, they can find golden nuggets of consumer insight that could bolster success.