Tips & Tricks

30 Experts Reveal the Biggest Ways that Data Mining Improves Customer Experience

With the explosion of Big Data, enterprises and SMBs alike are taking advantage of innovative opportunities to put raw data to use in actionable ways. From driving decision-making to re-targeting customers, reducing customer attrition, and engaging audiences across channels for a consistent, seamless customer experience, data drives modern business in myriad ways.

But how does data mining actually work to enhance customer experience? What ways are the most successful companies utilizing data to improve processes, capture a broader audience, convert prospects to buyers, and create exceptional experiences that keep customers coming back for more? To gain insight into these questions and dig deeper into the many ways data mining can transform your business, we asked a panel of data scientists and customer experience  professionals to answer this question:

“What’s the #1 way data mining can help improve customer experience?”

Find out what our experts had to say below.

Meet Our Panel of Data Scientists and Customer Experience Pros:

 


Parker JosephParker Joseph

@ParkerGJoseph

Parker is a Digital Media Analyst with WireSeek. His background is in website design, game design, and search engine marketing. Based in Jacksonville, Florida, Parker thrives on collecting and analyzing data to deliver a better user experience and provide relevant information to consumers on the web.

“Data mining can improve customer experience in a number of ways, but I think at the forefront is…”

Finding the path of least resistance for a user. If we can determine what a user wants to see on the web and deliver it to them with as little effort as possible on their end, then we have succeeded. Many people try to limit the amount of user interaction to a couple or a few clicks after reaching a landing page, but that is already too many. We live in a fast-paced mobile society where the average user wants gratification with one click. Data mining can provide insights about demographics or individual users, which can help us deliver information that a user might not even have known they were looking for initially.


Joe PinoJoe Pino

@ClutchSuccess

Joe Pino is Director of Client Success for Clutch, a leading provider of advanced consumer management solutions an array of premier brands. In his role, he heads managed services and oversees operational aspects and strategic client relationships. Previously he served strategic operational roles for Merrill Lynch (NYSE:BAC), Fiserv (NASDAQ:FISV) and Prudential (NYSE:PRU).

“Data mining can help to improve customer experience by…”

Today, the relentless stream of fragmented customer data from disparate systems is not only intimidating, but paralyzing many brands. Many of these businesses are unclear how to integrate and synthesize their data across their e-commerce sites, in-store point-of-sale systems, mobile applications, social networks, and email databases. Getting control of this data with a Consumer Management platform is the best way to quickly improve customer experience. This allows the brand to identify, understand, and motivate customers with a holistic, 360-degree view of their behaviors, tendencies, and preference in order to develop a marketing strategy focused on earning genuine loyalty.


OrchestrateSomeshwar Chidurala

@TechOrchestrate

Someshwar is a Digital Marketing Analyst for Orchestrate Technologies, LLC, a U.S.-based business process management organization with headquarters in Dallas, Texas.

“Leveraging data mining to improve the customer experience is achieved by…”

Data-driven organizations are leading the way in terms of extreme customer-centricity thanks to hitherto unheard methods of mining data. The rapid improvements in web technologies have ensured that providing a bespoke experience to customers need not burn a hole in the pocket. Customer data is everywhere. If one was so inclined, then there are enough analytical tools available in the market – both free and paid. There has to be a vision from the top of the company to gain meaningful insights from all that data available online.

The one important platform for gaining valuable customer insights is no doubt social media. Your customers are talking about your products. You can also gain valuable information about how your competitors are winning over
customers. All this helps to develop better engagement with your customers on a very personalized level. This is one of the biggest advantages of data mining in a world full of commoditization and standardization.


Kevin AdkinsKevin Adkins

Kevin Adkins is the CEO of Kenmore Law Group, a personal injury law firm in Los Angeles.

“The #1 way data mining can help improve the customer experience is by informing the process of…”

Placing the products in the store (whether brick and mortar or online) in the most optimal way. For example, let’s say we find out through data analysis that statistically speaking, those who buy product x are likely to want product y. Therefore, we place x and y next to each other to make shopping easier. This happens with online shopping sites too. The most famous example is Amazon’s suggested products: customers who bought this item also bought this other item.


Kirk ChewningKirk Chewning

@CaneBayPartners

Kirk M. Chewning attended Michigan State University, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in finance from the school’s Eli Broad College of Business. Along with his professional duties, he is actively involved in volunteering his time by teaching corporate skills to college students throughout North America.

For nearly 20 years, Chewning has been involved in the financial services industry. He is currently a partner and Co-CEO of Cane Bay Partners VI, LLLP.

“Data mining is an invaluable tool for any business – there’s no better way to figure out exactly what your customers want than by…”

Taking a deep dive into the information they give you during their time on your website. Data mining can allow you to offer products and services to customers before they even know they want them. The best part is that your returns with data mining increase over time – the more you know about your customers, the easier it is to provide them with exactly the kind of service they want.


Adarsh ThampyAdarsh Thampy

@leadferry

Adarsh Thampy is the co-founder and CEO of LeadFerry, a content marketing automation software.

“The best way data mining can help improve customer experience is by…”

Offering enhanced personalization. Data mining can help you go beyond the simple personalization of a customer’s or prospect’s name.

Here is a real-world example. I use a particular mobile app for booking movie tickets and follow the same pattern every time. Despite the company having my pattern, it still makes me click four times to start seeing the list of movies I want.

When I am on 3G/2G, data connection can be slow and loading each extra screen adds to a frustrating experience which could have been easily avoided.

With data mining, you can look at patterns and provide a highly personalized and delightful customer experience.


Charles CaldwellCharles Caldwell

@CCaldwellLogi

Charles Caldwell is VP, Solutions Engineering and Services for Logi Analytics, the leader in self-service analytics. He has over a decade of experience building data warehouses and reporting systems for Fortune 500 organizations such as Unilever and American Express. He holds an MBA from George Washington with a focus on the decision sciences.

“Data mining in terms of customer experience primarily benefits organizations that have…”

A very large customer base. Those organizations can’t know each customer individually. Data mining allows them to gain insights about their customers based on data to increase customer retention. When you can’t capture those insights on a person-by-person basis, data mining enables you to do it en masse. By analyzing the data of each customer, companies can meaningfully re-engage their customers through targeted discounts, suggest sells, and loyalty rewards at scale.


Jordan CohenJordan Cohen

@ClutchSuccess

Jordan Cohen delivers advanced customer marketing technology solutions to an array of leading brands for Clutch, a pioneering customer marketing platform. Previously Jordan  held strategic technology roles with Independence Blue Cross, Inspirit Growth, and Delaware Investments.

“Brands that synthesize their customer data from disparate marketing sources have the opportunity to…”

Gain a holistic view of their customers and gain a tremendous competitive advantage in earning loyalty. The key is having a centralized marketing platform that integrates with each customer data source – POS, ecommerce, mobile, social, etc. – allowing for customer identification, segmentation, scoring, and analysis. When a brand can assume this view of the customer, it enhances its understanding of customer interests, buying behavior, preferences, and affinities with the brand, and can subsequently create individualized experiences and personalized engagements, which nearly 80 percent of consumers now expect from brands they interact with. By providing relevance and delighting customers beyond their traditional expectations, a brand can significantly enhance conversion by at least 9x and thus cultivate true brand evangelists. This is the pinnacle of a successful marketing strategy and gets to the bottom of an unfortunately rarely answered question of, “Who are my top 10, 20, or even 100 most valuable customers?”


Gina CeramiGina Cerami

@Connotate

Gina Cerami is the VP of Marketing for Connotate, Inc.

“Data mining helps improve the customer experience by…”

Recognizing and tracking patterns within data that can be analyzed for insight and intelligence however, it’s not just the act of data mining that leads to the best insights or best decisions. The ability to harvest customer or consumer feedback and make sense of the wide range of comments is critical to:

  • Customer loyalty – monitoring and noting patterns in rating scores; monitoring/harvesting feedback to products and services and then prioritizing and implementing based on comments.
  • New market opportunities (e.g. new revenue) – monitoring/harvesting consumer or client feedback to current offerings while listening for enhancements or capabilities that can make an offering stickier or result in a Beta of a new offering.
  • Increasing customer retention (reducing churn) – monitoring/harvesting both positive and negative feedback to ensure critical commentary (whether positive or negative) is addressed.

But data mining is not necessarily the first (or most important) step in the process. Identifying the best sources of content (amazon for product reviews, user forums, yelp, open table, etc.) can’t be overlooked and choosing a web data extraction platform – like Connotate – that can automate the content harvesting and reliably deliver scheduled pulls of the freshest feedback can’t be overlooked either.

Harvesting the content, recognizing and tracking the patterns, and analyzing the data set are all important to the end goal.


Carl ForrestCarl Forrest

@Do214

@CarlForrest

Carl Forrest is the Director of Growth Analytics at Do214.

“At DoStuff, user experience is a pivotal component in what we do and data mining enables us to…”

Know what features are driving engagement and desired user behavior, and test which features are improving user retention and satisfaction.

Historically, product development has been fairly ad hoc. You come up with an idea and hope it works. What we think might be an improvement to our UX may actually be confusing to the user experience.

Data mining lets us test a variety of different features and measure the immediate user response. We’ve fully embraced data-driven product development and it’s resulted in exponential growth in our user metrics.


Haley GongHaley Gong

@webpower

Haley Gong graduated from the Johns Hopkins University and is now a marketing executive at Webpower China in Shanghai, striving to serve clients who are seeking email marketing solutions in China.

“One valuable way that data mining can improve the customer experience is…”

For most email marketers, content relevancy always keeps us away from customers’ spam boxes. The logic is simple: sending relevant content to your customers shows how much you care about them — that you’re willing to learn about their interests and make recommendations accordingly.

But how? At Webpower, we curate customer ‘portraits’ through progressive profiling. We establish a dedicated ID for each of the customers in the system and begin to ‘portrait’ this customer. We then track all his/her email behaviors to polish the portrait: How many times was the email opened? At what time? What kind of information he/she clicked the most? What was clicked the least? Did he/she make a final purchase? The list goes on and on. Based on the information gleaned, we are able to personalize emails sent to each customer with relevant content tailored to their liking.

As time goes on, we strengthen trust with our customers. This is also when they are willing to give us more details about themselves: occupation, address, income level, etc. In this way, we not only understand customers’ behavior but are also able to associate these behaviors with their social status. Hence, an explicit and dynamic customer ‘portrait’ is curated.

Once we have an in-depth understanding of customers’ interests, we will always go that extra mile and provide them with just that.


Vadim BichutskiyVadim Bichutskiy

@vybstat

Vadim Bichutskiy is Director of Data Science at Innovizo, a data science and technology consulting company based in Washington, DC, where he leads a team of engineers and data scientists who advise clients on data analytics projects.

“If you are looking for the #1 way data mining helps improve customer experience, look no further than…”

Cross-selling. Being an avid reader, I buy lots of books on Amazon, and on many occasions I have taken advantage of its “Frequently Bought Together” and “Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought” features. Not only did I enjoy the books, but I never would have known about them without these recommendations. In fact, Amazon estimates that up to 35% of its revenue comes from cross-selling.


Alex ReichmannAlex Reichmann

@iTestCash

Alex Reichmann is a counterfeit detection expert and CEO of iTestCash. Counterfeit detection started in the family when his Grandfather ran Dri-Mark who produced the original counterfeit detector pen. iTestCash works with businesses all over the U.S. and abroad.

“One of the top ways to utilize data mining for improving customers’  experiences is to…”

Track how new visitors react to your website.

As an online business owner, I use this to analyze landing pages on our website, including the home page, product pages, and blog posts. If a lot of customers leave a page quickly, this can sometimes show room for improvement.

After tweaking pages like that over time you can see if they perform better. Sometimes little changes such as adding images, making the text easier to read, or adding a reviews option to product pages can make all the difference.


Jim BelosicJim Belosic

@ShortStackLab

Jim Belosic is CEO and co-founder of ShortStack.com, an SaaS company that makes marketing software used for lead-generation, landing pages, contests, and promotions. ShortStack.com was #478 on Inc.’s 2015 list of the 500 fastest-growing private companies in the U.S.

“Data mining allows a business owner’s messaging to…”

Be on target with where her customers are in their sales lifecycles. For example, if you’re a realtor, knowing the timeline for when a customer is looking to buy is critical. If a customer says, “I’m planning to buy in 6 months,” you could slowly build a relationship with them with a helpful drip campaign helping to educate them about the process. If you utilize that same campaign for someone who indicates they’re planning to buy within one week, it’s wasted effort. Knowing where your customer is in your lifecycle is critical, and you can easily find out by using newsletter sign-up forms, surveys, contests, etc.

Data mining also allows marketers to reward loyal repeat customers. Take contests, as one example. With our system, we encourage brands to reward past contest entrants when they enter new contests. A returning entrant may
receive 2 points and a new entrant would only receive one point in a contest. It encourages loyalty and continual engagement.


Paul TurnerPaul Turner

@skyviewPaul

Paul Turner of Skyview Consulting has spent over 20 years in Corporate Performance Management, Business Intelligence, ERP, SPM, CRM, and other areas and has implemented analytics at leading Fortune 500 organizations. Paul has worked at industry leaders like Oracle/Hyperion, CallidusCloud, NetSuite, Workday, and Adaptive Insights.

“Data mining improves customer experience by…”

Prioritizing services and resource based on a prediction. For example, a mobile phone company might predict that you are at risk of leaving based on your behavior yet are of high potential future value, and so they will proactively offer you an enticing package to ensure you’ll stay. They get your business; you get a better deal. A retailer might predict what you will buy based on your shopping basket – perhaps diapers and baby milk might mean that your are a new mom – and optimize offers for you around that. You spend your money with them, but you save money versus shopping elsewhere. A bank might identify you as a high future value customer and prioritize your wait time on call or provide you with expertise to help you grow your wealth – ensuring that you keep your assets with them.

Customers benefit from a more precise and proactive, targeted use of the company’s resources – from more targeted and relevant offers, to more proactive account retention if behaviors – such as reducing your monthly plan, or less account usage, predict risk.


Anthony AntonicelloAnthony Antonicello

@A_Antonicello

@BusGrowthLeader

With nearly 10 years in sales, marketing, and leadership, Anthony Antonicello, founder of Business Growth Leader, continues to be driven by his passion and core values to find innovative solutions to help clients find success in their industries. Anthony has a diverse sales and marketing background with extensive skills in leadership, entrepreneurship, corporate communication, team building, and public speaking. He attributes his core values of determination, integrity, and perseverance to achieving his success. Anthony also promotes his personal mission to help others achieve high levels of success. He shares his knowledge and expertise with the business community as a motivational speaker, author, and business consultant.

“Data mining impacts the customer experience in a major way…”

As a completely online business, the data we collect is imperative to growing our company. One of the primary mediums in which we communicate to our readers is through email marketing. We have a subscriber base exceeding 100,000 contacts, and without the proper data mining protocols in place, we would have no way to provide a custom tailored experience to our clients. The reality is that data mining makes all the difference for our customers’ experience. The reason for this is because our readers are not all the same. They might be C-suite, or maybe managers, or even sales reps. Also their businesses may be B2B, B2C, or both. All have individual buyer personas and different goals and priorities.

Here are the 3 greatest impacts of data mining to our customer experience:

1. Targeted and personalized messaging.

On a subscriber level basis, we use data mining to autonomously tell us which offers to make to which customers with a full explanation as to why. A segment we create as a direct result to data mining is geographic segmentation to influence purchasing decisions for locally available brands. Using data mining for predictive analytics, we are able to custom-tailor our message to specifically meet their individual needs and find any areas for internal growth.

For example, we now know that our readers are highly educated people. 85% hold undergrad degrees and 38% hold a graduate degree. This knowledge enables us to adapt our communications to appeal to this customer.

2. Improve brand loyalty and customer engagement.

We use data mining to create behavior-based segmentation to find trends in on-site engagement and acquisition and make custom recommendations as a direct result.

For example, we learned that the majority of our readers are affluent consumers. 60% earn in excess of $100,000 annually and 33% earn over $150,000. 13% are buying a new home in the next year, and 25% are buying a new car.

3. Stay relevant with our customers.

We also receive data insights on content to further increase our segmentation. This builds more relevant content based on what the reader wants to receive.

For example, using predictive analytics we learned that 75% of our readers are business owners or decision makers within their organization. 47% are C-level and above, and 83% have significant purchasing influence at their
organization.

Data mining is not only imperative internally to gain a clear, value-based understanding of our customer base but also to our customers to ensure a highly personalized customer experience. As Theodore Roosevelt once said, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” Data mining allows us to show our readers how much we care on an individual level and ensure loyalty for years to come.


Kayla EthanKayla Ethan

Kayla Ethan works at Rebateszone and has written articles on major media outlets like Huffington Post and Lifehack. In her spare time, she loves to rock climb and snowboard.

“Data mining is critical for improving customer experience because…”

Competing on price is usually not an option for SMEs, so the only thing left is customer experience. The best way that data mining has helped us is to improve our product delivery and make it more targeted.

For example, we found that our customers from a certain region were using Internet data at certain times during the day. We analyzed it further and launched a successful campaign to offer packages that would give them more data at a lower cost. It improved their experience and we managed to increase our data sales.


Marjori BergmanMarjori Bergman

@ignitehappiness

Marjori Bergman is the Founder and Principal of Ignite Global Consulting. Ignite supports leaders across the globe to increase performance, productivity, and profits through Happiness at Work programs and creating a winning culture.

“Data mining is vital to clearly define your customer avatar – the primary driver for growing your business…”

The more an organization knows about their customers, above and beyond basic demographics, the more they can refine products/services, policies and procedures, and marketing/advertising/communication strategies to suit the customer’s (and potential customers’) wants and needs. When you have a set of customers, satisfied or dissatisfied, and you can gather specific information on their preferences, you now have the ability to leverage that to grow that customer segment as you are basing decisions on real customer data and not assumptions.

Any time you have the opportunity to speak with a customer and can gather specific feedback about how they initially found you, why they chose to do business with you, how satisfied they were with your product/service, how you could be better, where they “hang out” online, and how they like to be communicated to, then you have baseline information to grow your customer base.

“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” – Bill Gates


Gerald BuckleyGerald Buckley

@ConsumerAffairs

Gerald Buckley handles Consumer Marketing and Analytics at ConsumerAffairs. If it’s advertising and marketing related, Gerald is probably in the thick of it learning how to improve the connections we create with our customers to deliver more meaningful customer experiences over and over again. Overseeing ConsumerAffairs’ community marketing efforts, Gerald taps into the current voice of today’s consumer audience, helps amplify consumer voices online across ConsumerAffairs.com, and uses consumer insights to provide tailored learning resources to consumers using ConsumerAffairs to make smart decisions.

“Data mining can improve customer experience by…”

I worked for a rental car company in 1999. We were flying back from our annual convention, and the CEO dropped his newspaper and asked who our biggest competitor was. Taxis was my reply. He thought I was nuts. If you think of it in utilization terms, the taxis beat car rental on a KPI basis routinely. 17 years later, Uber is completely changing the landscape. Why? They offer a better user experience. Same car. Sometimes it’s even the same driver. Arguably better value. Absolutely improved transparency. It’s largely data-driven and scored for optimal experience and repeat purchase. A rental car company couldn’t have delivered that service in 1999 – the infrastructure wasn’t ready. A business has to have its antennae up 24/7 listening to the customer and redefining what constitutes best of class customer experience, and that is why Uber is able to consistently improve on the customer experience.

Some of the key data mining differentiators ahead are going to be the proprietary algorithms companies use to score their past (and future) performance and how those companies measure the effect of their alterations in the customer journey. The old adage, “You can’t manage what you don’t measure,” holds as true today as ever before with one important distinction: most enterprises don’t bother to measure data due to too many inputs. The brands that do identify key data points to focus on and effectively manage processes for the KPIs that really matter are the brands that will flourish. We are all swimming in big data, and the only way to avoid drowning is to isolate the most valuable measures to improve on customer experience and to take advantage of data mining with a sharper focus.

Being adept at mining data and being an expert at unpacking that data makes experiences like Nordstrom, Trader Joe’s, or the Apple Store so good. Scoring each interaction and routinely tending the outliers to understand what went right or wrong is incredibly strategic. You absolutely cannot get there without hovering over your CX metrics, and that’s why data mining is so valuable (and so overwhelming).


Sean Guillory, PhDSean Guillory, PhD

@ConsumerAffairs

As the son of two military parents, Dr. Sean Guillory (Ph.D., Dartmouth College) has been trained to pick up and go when opportunity strikes. After having the opportunities to map brain functions in neurosurgery patients and helping to run a humanitarian-focused business incubator, Sean was given the wonderful opportunity to be ConsumerAffairs‘ first data scientist. So with his dreams and a GPS, Sean packed up the wife and kid and headed to Tulsa with the vision to build the most interesting data science team in the world.

“Data mining has the power to find…”

The real da Vinci code. It could compile and codify the brilliance of the millions of artists that have walked this earth and the billions of observers who enjoy it.

ConsumerAffairs is a massive source of big data, and our teams are constantly evaluating which metrics we need to prioritize so we can make significant improvements in customer experience. Our Brands Application offers focused data to provide our partnered brands with data that matters, in an organized format for easier analysis. If we did not drill down to these key measures, we would be awash in numbers so overwhelming our focus would be lessened.


Tracy WillisTracy Willis

@notothequo

Tracy Willis is a content strategist with N2Q Consulting. N2Q Consulting is a creative marketing agency based in Seattle, WA. N2Q is here to help businesses look beyond the status quo and create something worth talking about. Our team specializes in social media, web design, SEO, PPC, and branding.

“There are a multitude of benefits to data mining…”

When you analyze extremely large amounts of data, you gain a new perspective of common patterns, abnormalities, or potential outcomes. The most beneficial way businesses can use data mining is to increase conversions through well-targeted advertising campaigns. Segment your customers into audience groups by determining common similarities in age, income, location, and interests.


Mihai CorbuleacMihai Corbuleac

@spirinet

Mihai is an avid technology reader and occasional writer. He loves helping people and animals. Mihai is an IT consultant at ComputerSupport.com, an IT support company providing managed IT services, cloud computing, and onsite support across the United States since 2006. His favorite areas include Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure infrastructures.

“We are doing a lot of data mining, especially for our new clients and I would say, based on my experience and also after discussing several times with ComputerSupport’s and Unigma’s CEO and founder Kirill Bensonoff, data mining is vital for…”

Both the client and service provider. As a service provider you need to know your client, their needs, their past experience, etc. This is where you need to apply the association technique, also known as relation technique, in order to associate some services with other needed services. For instance, you will always need a viable Internet connection if you decide to use public cloud services.

Getting to know your clients and their needs is the first way data mining helps improve customer experience. Putting all the details together through data mining – analyzing patterns and calculated predictions – will help any business, not only IT related ones, to get to know potential clients and their needs, and eventually, to start new collaborations.


Spreadsheet SherpaDerik Timmerman

@excelsherpa

Derik Timmerman spent six years at McKinsey & Company consulting Fortune 500 companies in Advanced Analytics. He’s now the co-founder and CEO of Spreadsheet Sherpa, an insight services company committed to helping businesses, professionals, academics, and students fix their Microsoft Excel problems and enhance their impact through analytics.

“The foremost way that data mining helps improve customer experience is…”

Continuous hypothesis-driven investigation and subsequent action to fix the leaks in one’s marketing funnel. Although the stages of the funnel go by different names depending on the origin of the model, every competent business owner or marketer knows them by heart: (1) awareness, (2) consideration, (3) trial, (4) purchase, and (5) loyalty. Have an hypothesis that there is a significant leak between trial and purchase? Mine your data for patterns around the customers you’re keeping and those you’re losing. How about a leak between purchase and loyalty? Data mine customer surveys for the root causes underlying the revolving door. Is everything after awareness running well? Then it’s time to mine the data for your most profitable customer demographic and solve for ways to drive higher awareness at the top of the funnel. The key is to keep this process hypothesis-driven and action-oriented; data mining for data mining’s sake does little more for one’s business than reading the newspaper.


Adina FentonAdina Fenton

@SaferVPN

Adina Fenton is the Director of Customer Success & Operations at SaferVPN.

“There is no number one way data mining helps improve customer experience, more like data mining…”

IS the number one way to improve customer experience.

For me the motto is: stats don’t lie. You can rarely anticipate what is going to be the user reaction on a specific page, campaign, or call to action. To gain time and better understand your audience, A/B testing can prove very useful. By exposing your audience to different options ultimately leading to the same action, you can gain a lot of knowledge on what works or not. But any little change can change it all: a different color, font, or size of a button should always, in my opinion, be submitted to A/B testing before being generally implemented. We often look to have the nicest websites, the coolest design, or the most artistic UI, but in the end, it’s not always these aspects that convert the best. And a conversion is a successful user experience. So rather than trust our instincts as designers or tech people, analyzing the behavior of users is ultimately the best way to make adjustments.

In addition, knowing the stats at every stage of the funnel is important as it allows you to understand WHERE you need to improve and implement changes. Maybe you know that you have a bad conversion rate on AdWords, but where do you actually lose the users? Do they click on the ad? Do they continue to your website? Do they stay there long? Do they add products to their cart? At each point, there are optimizations to be made in order to assure that the maximum percentage of users gets to the next level. Understanding where your users left can also help you understand WHY they left and avoid it in the future. For instance, if your customer went looking for a coupon and never came back, don’t offer coupon codes; offer an immediate percentage off. If most of your customers add items to their cart but never visit it, you might want to rethink the way the cart works. Data mining can also help you pinpoint bugs and tech glitches where a high failure rate exists.

Most of the time, on the Internet, we don’t have a direct interaction with the customer and the only leverage we have is to observe his behavior and reactions and learn from them in order to improve the customer experience, and ultimately the sales strategy.


Chip Bell Chip Bell

@ChipRBell

Chip R. Bell is a top business consultant, renowned keynote speaker, and the author of several best-selling books. Global Gurus ranked him both in 2014 and 2015 as the #1 keynote speaker in the world on customer service. Chip Bell’s latest book, Sprinkles: Creating Awesome Experiences Through Innovative Service, offers a gourmet banquet of ways that today’s companies can devise ways to cost-effectively surprise and delight customers with every experience.

“Data-mining can be extremely powerful for improving customer experience – but only when…”

Shared with the right people.

Data mining enables the capacity to deliver a personalized experience for customers, something typically valued. As a key source of customer intelligence, it can help avoid inaccurate responses to customer needs and expectations while enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of a service response. However, the power of data mining is significantly reduced if it is not used to inform the frontline thus deepening their understanding of those they serve. Strategic decision making based on big data carefully mined is important but customer experience happens at the tactical level where a frontline employee manages a customer encounter.


Dr. Jonathan FarleyDr. Jonathan Farley

Dr. Jonathan Farley obtained his doctorate from Oxford University, winning Oxford’s highest mathematics awards for graduate students.

Seed Magazine named him one of “15 people who have shaped the global conversation about science in 2005.” Harvard professor Allen Counter said, “Farley is one of the world’s most impressive young mathematicians….”

“Data mining can improve customers’ experiences in this way…”

At Walmart, if they learn that customers who buy X tend to also buy Y (using, for example, Formal Concept Analysis), Walmart can have its stores place Y near X. Walmart can also put some distance between X and Y so the customer has to walk past a lot of other items he or she might buy (according to the data).


Steven MacdonaldSteven Macdonald

@StevenMacd0nald

Steven is a digital marketer at SuperOffice. Steven is based in Tallinn, Estonia.

“The biggest way that data mining improves customer experience is…”

The new customer, or customer 2.0, has plenty of choices and in order to win the customers heart and wallet, you need to proactively offer them a relevant product or service.

By mining your CRM database, you will find knowledge of what your customers need based on the data indicating what your customers were interested in, asked for, or already purchased. You can also mine this data to identify problems that they have encountered with the products and whether they were happy with the solutions you provide.

Put simply, mine the data to get a full 360 view of your customer and start offering them what they really want, instead of what you think they want.


Krish SubramanianKrish Subramanian

@chargebee

Krish is the Co-Founder and CEO of Chargebee, a Subscription Billing Solution for Online Businesses. Krish is in charge of the overall marketing, customer acquisition, communications, and brand management.​ Krish comes with 10+ years of services experience from his prior stints at Tata Consultancy Services and Cognizant Technology Solutions.

“The number one way that data mining helps to improve customer experience is…”

There are two types of customers when it comes to evaluating Customer Experience. The first type of customers who come onboard are those who have very specific queries that they would like to see answered without spending way too much time. The second type of customers are those who are trying to use the application and have queries about the usage of application. Data mining plays a crucial role in both places. A case in point is a very smart use of a tool like Intercom or Splunk, which bubbles up data in the form features, that the customers have already experienced as tags against customer names. And by leveraging that information, you ask contextual questions when you are talking to a prospect. You don’t say, “Did you get a chance to evaluate the application?” Instead you straight away ask, “I notice that you have been trying to set up a hosted page and have completed the checkout, but I would love to know if you have had any difficulty in setting up the product plans.” This type of mining will help you be more specific, get to the point quickly, and express that you mean business and are not going to waste their time. Customers need to know that their time is valued, and you are expressing that. And the #1 way you can do that is by knowing the context of the problem they are dealing with, in terms of things that they have done inside the application and getting to that straight away, rather than going around in circles. Data mining helps you bubble up specific information, and it enables a sales guy or a support person to have a very good and intellectual conversation. This cuts the barrier in terms of how much you know the customer without prodding around too much.


Megan Sullivan-JenksMegan Sullivan-Jenks

@choozle

From nonprofits and emergency services to consumer goods and apparel, Megan has helped businesses create online and offline marketing campaigns that are engaging and memorable. As the Marketing Director at Choozle, the leading self-service programmatic digital marketing platform, Megan executes all marketing strategies for the company with a keen on integration and ROI.

“Data mining helps to improve customer experience by…”

Business and customer data has existed for ages. But mostly it just sat hopelessly trapped in handwritten ledgers and filing cabinets. The introduction of integrated media buying tools has allowed businesses to apply the secrets within their customer data and use it within their programmatic advertising strategy. Tying customer data into programmatic media buying creates a powerful digital marketing strategy which provides marketers the ability to target their customers based on their preferences and behavioral patterns versus guessing what their consumer would like. In addition, the strategy of using data businesses already have about their customers allows them a way to engage with customers at the right moment along the customer journey to create an overall better experience for the end customer.


Maria WangMaria Wang

@leveleducation

Maria Wang, formerly analytics lead at BCG and Principal Scientist at Oracle, is the founding lecturer and senior adviser for Level, a data analytics bootcamp out Northeastern University now operating in Boston, Seattle, Charlotte, and Silicon Valley.

“Data mining helps companies create a better customer experience by…”

Customers get to save the time and effort from searching for the right product or service with personalized marketing, and customers’ individual preference over product features can be better served with sentiment analysis. They can be more properly rewarded with their lifetime value accurately accounted for, and they may also expect greater convenience during their interaction with the business, such as shorter wait on the call, greater product recommendation, or more customized service to meet their exact needs.