Why Do Companies Collect Your Personal Data?
In short, to better serve you, the customer. Consumer or customer behaviour and personal data helps them to get a much better understanding of the way their consumers behave online, define their overall demographics, and identify the ways in which they can improve the overall customer experience.
Businesses regularly capture, store, and analyse large amounts of quantitative and qualitative data on their consumer base every day. Some companies have built an entire business model around consumer data, whether they’re companies selling personal information to a third party or creating targeted ads. Customer data is big business.
What Kind Of Data Do Companies Collect And Store?
The consumer data that businesses collect can be broken down into 3 main categories:
- Personal data.This category includes personally identifiable information such as name, phone number, credit card number, number plate, customer number or address, as well as non-personally identifiable information, including your IP address, web browser cookies, and device IDs (which both your laptop and mobile device have).
- Behavioural data.This type of data is generated by consumer’s interaction with a business. This may be across their mobile apps, social media pages, emails, paid ads and customer service routes. So may include things like pay views, email sign-ups, or other important user actions.
- Attitudinal data.This data type encompasses metrics on consumer satisfaction, purchase criteria, product desirability and more. Preference data, opinions, desirability, branding and sentiments are usually captured in surveys, focus groups and usability tests. This is where questionnaires Net Promoter Score quantify how interactions and behaviours affect attitude.
What Does This Mean For My Personal Data?
Roughly 63% of consumers say that they expect personalisation from the companies they use when it comes to marketing and product suggestions, order confirmations, and any sort of communication between themselves and businesses.
Collecting data allows businesses to meet consumer expectations in regard to personalised communications and suggestions. Think about Global giants who do this very well; Netflix and Amazon, when you think about customer experience, the first thing that probably comes to mind is their prolific use of personal recommendations. Fuelled almost entirely by customer behaviour data, their advanced recommendation engine algorithms are designed to serve customers dynamically personalised content and product suggestions based upon each customer’s past behaviour.
Organisations use data to better understand you. This helps them provide great customer service and build trust in the way your data is used. Another example, Kippie uses your personal data in an “Insurance Passport”, which is useable between countries. The insurance passport allows you to access their panel of insurers for 20-50% less than what they currently pay, giving you a great product based on your personal data.