Within Retail it's always been the case that 'The Customer Is King'.  In today's highly enlightened society that should of course read "or Queen" but you get the gist.  Understanding your customer's needs and providing a quality product/service to him (or her) is what Retail has been all about for ever, especially if a Retailer has been at all keen to hold on to said customer and see them come back time and again to buy more stuff.

However, the advent of omnichannel, always-on Retail opportunity has meant that customers have become fickle, demanding and disloyal, flitting from brand to brand, store to store as their personal needs and preferences for shopping change on a perpetual basis.  The generational impact of a more tech-savvy, attention-span poor tranche of the purchasing public is only complicating life further for Retailers meaning that it has never been more important to truly understand customers than today.

It's therefore imperative that Retailers have a data-centric, digital transformation-ready strategy aligned with their business plans for future growth.  Knowing who your customers are, what and when they purchase, how much they spend with you, what they don't buy and how they respond to your interaction with them has become critical.  Opportunities to suggest cross- and upsell items or services which complement existing purchases will maximise revenue, margin and growth potential but none of this is possible without a solid plan for digital business transformation.

The foundations necessary for ingesting customer data from multiple sources in multiple formats aligned with transactional history can only be found in a strategy aimed at engineering systems, applications, processes and platforms capable of injecting business agility.  With such an infrastructure it then becomes possible to analyse true Life Time Value (LTV), correlate Conversion statistics and build Retention strategies to achieve the sorts of sales growth numbers quoted by our friends at dunnhumby.

Your customers - Kings and Queens alike - demand your regal respect.  Do so and you stand to benefit massively.