The top challenges that companies must overcome in using analytics as a tool for more meaningful customer-related decisions revolve around factors such as customer profitability, churn, segmentation, upselling and loyalty, according to research by analytics software firm Alteryx and research firm AbsolutData. This article is copyright 2013 The Best Customer Guide.

The resulting research report, entitled 'Predicting Customer Behaviour with Analytics', focused specifically on the benefits of customer analytics, and identified three key lessons that companies can use to improve the results of their customer data analytics:

  1. Customer insights come from many data sources
    Traditional sources of customer data still dominate, however companies are increasing their use of new data sources including customer demographics, research data and POS/transaction data.
  2. There are several types of actionable benefit
    Some 63% of survey respondents said they use customer analytics to enhance customer satisfaction, indicating that customer analytics is more than hindsight snapshots of the past, and that it actually allows companies to anticipate buyer behaviour across all stages of the customer lifecycle.
  3. Challenges prevent optimal use of customer analytics
    Almost all respondents (88%) reported having limited access to specialists with industry-leading skills. These organisations note that they're experiencing an increased demand across all departments for access to customer data and analytics tools to make quick, effective customer decisions, without being a highly-trained data scientist.