Don’t Just Measure Data … Understand Your Consumers: Top Things to Know from InfoTrust + Google’s Virtual Retail Summit

Don’t Just Measure Data … Understand Your Consumers: Top Things to Know from InfoTrust + Google’s Virtual Retail Summit
Estimated Reading Time: 6 minutes

Retail marketers and analytics professionals across the globe face a unique set of daily challenges. As a leader in the retail/eCommerce space (with partnerships at Staples, Overstock, Sephora, Backcountry, Guitar Center, Luxottica, Grainger, and Tailored Brands), the InfoTrust team understands that there is much education required to push retail advertisers to the multi-moment stage of the digital analytics maturity framework. 

Our recent Retail Analytics Virtual Summit brought together the brightest minds from the top retail and eCommerce organizations in the world. Presenters shared best practices and learnings on how to advance your organization along the digital maturity framework.

Did you miss the event? No worries! We’ve got the top things to know from each presentation and a recording of the summit in its entirety.

Google Keynote: 2022 Digital Analytics Trends for Retailers

Presenters: Neil Hoyne, Chief Measurement Strategist, Google and Michael Loban, Chief Growth Officer, InfoTrust

  1. Your organization needs to create a playbook to understand what you are after and how you will execute on it.
  2. There needs to be a period of examination and experimentation: what did you learn from all that occurred and the data you’ve collected; and how quickly can you learn from what the marketing data is showing you?
  3. Don’t be afraid to try something new. You can’t keep doing what you’ve always done because the retail world continues to evolve.
  4. Customer relationships have a huge impact on your business. You need to understand them like never before and reengage them in specific segments.
  5. With regards to privacy, customers are seeking: 
    • Transparency
    • Control
    • Value Exchange
  6. Be sure to know where you sit with privacy regulations. Take an assessment ASAP. 

Media Measurement & Optimization in a Privacy-Centric Environment

Presentor: Lucas Long, Project Manager, Tag Inspector

The most important thing for organizations to remember is that new challenges, in light of the focus on privacy, should be viewed as opportunities for competitive advantage. To attain that advantage, it is best to focus on:

  1. First-party control of first-party data (this is the data you will use for analysis and machine learning)
  2. Be great at the fundamentals of data collection and analysis capabilities
  3. Relationships with consumers are critical
  4. Always prioritize the privacy preferences of users

Practical Advice for Improving Your Digital Experience – with Sally Beauty

Presentors: Ritika Shrivastava, Digital Analytics Manager, Sally Beauty and Courtney Fenstermaker, Direct to Consumer Strategist and Team Lead, InfoTrust

  1. Creating omni-channel experiences for your B2C and B2B customers means creating a seamless transition from the in-store experience to online.
    • Google Analytics has been able to help guide Sally Beauty’s understanding of customer experience on their website through analyses like findability in-store vs. navigation online.
    • Similarly, one of the key product categories for Sally Beauty is hair color, which historically would be a product purchased in-store with the support of a store associate. However, bringing new ways of using technology (like Virtual Try-On) to bridge the gap allows for more digital engagement. 
  2. A test-and-learn mentality has helped to unlock success for Sally Beauty by rolling out new features, such as buy-online-pickup-in-store (BOPIS).
    • Through constant analysis and data gathering, Sally Beauty was able to resolve any friction points or confusion and roll out BOPIS to be an extremely successful extension of their fulfillment options.
    • This allowed for even greater expansion and room for improving customer experience through same-day delivery.
  3. Some advice for 2022? If you’re not already, involve your entire team (analytics, UX, marketing, product, etc.) in the process of improving the digital customer experience! And in the age of the Great Resignation, be sure to document everything you do so there is record of all of the great work being done and it’s easy to involve new employees as they join your team.

What Retailers Need to Know About Google Analytics 4

Presentors: Shweta Kulshreshtha, Measurement Lead, Google and Chinonso Emma-Ebere, Senior Lead Digital Analytics Consultant, InfoTrust

  1. As cookies become more scarce, Google Analytics 4 (GA4) will offer solutions that support marketing activation while respecting user privacy—it’s great for retailers, too!
    • More secure integration options (new measurement protocol)
    • Consolidation and deduplication
    • Machine learning within the reporting UI
  2. Retail companies have already started (or hope to start) leveraging new GA4 features.
    • BigQuery Real Exports
    • Consent Mode for observed and modeled data
    • Cross-platform and cross-device integration for aggregate ROI
  3. Changing your enterprise’s analytics model can be challenging at first, but approaching GA4 as an iterative process can have long-term impact including ROI and cost savings.
    • Start dual use of UA and GA4 now 
    • Create an environment for data integration across your platforms
    • Early communication on GA4 and the benefits offered 
    • Integrate your data (especially with YouTube)
    • Activate on insights (through machine learning)

Fireside Chat: The Importance of Cloud and Retail

Meghan Hodge, Account Executive, InfoTrust and Tyler Blatt, Lead Analytics Engineer, InfoTrust

  1. Evaluate your data foundation. True-up first-party data to prepare for personalization.
  2. Use the cloud to un-silo and synthesize data to start multivariate testing.
  3. Iterate on testing and learn as you go—adopt a culture of testing!

Summary

Throughout the summit, attendees heard these major themes:

  1. With regards to privacy, consumers are expecting:
    • Transparency
    • Control 
    • Value Exchange
  2. Don’t just measure and collect data to collect it. Understand your consumers and build relationships with them. Identify what they are waiting for before they will share their data, make a first purchase, and become a repeat customer.
  3. Technology continues to evolve and become more and more exciting—but at the heart of it, we’re all trying to use information to create more genuine relationships with our customers. Whether it’s testing, personalization, or innovation, at the heart of it is creating a stronger experience leading to a stronger relationship.
  4. Be great at the fundamentals and leverage the right tools (like Google Analytics 4 and Google Cloud). Focus on 5 percent improvements to transform your business—the small efforts add up.

Want to rewatch the event or share with a colleague? Here’s a recording of the summit in its entirety.

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To compete (and better yet, grow), retail and eCommerce companies must ensure that their digital analytics and data governances are up to date. We're here when you're ready to get started.
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Last Updated: January 17, 2023

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