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Customer Satisfaction in the Big Data Era – Do Not Forget the Human Dimension

While customer satisfaction is a priority for a vast majority of companies, the drivers of its improvement are evolving over time especially in the increasing digitization of companies. However, if it is a field that is increasingly being heard and whose importance now seems inevitable, it is the Big Data.

Behind this term, there is a large amount of data with a strong marketing and commercial interest. Is this data collected throughout the customer relationship usable in the context of improving customer satisfaction? Will Big Data allow for a profound change in the management of relationships between companies and their consumers?

Big Data and Customer Satisfaction: Contextual Analysis

The massive collection of customer information – or Big Data – made possible by the digitization of companies is due, among other things, to the increase in communication channels offered to customers. This multiplicity of sources obliges companies to centralize the data gathered at the various points of contact, which makes it possible to visualize the customer relationship as a whole,

At the same time, the demands of consumers are also evolving: they expect rapid responses to their demands and increasingly individualized care.

In this context, Big Data and the exploitation of data provided by consumers is an essential opportunity to grasp to improve customer knowledge and generate satisfaction by offering more and more personalized support.

Big Data Challenges

However, the use of collected data for improvement in customer satisfaction is far from easy: Big Data groups together a set of raw data that will have to be analyzed, cross-checked and classified before they can be implemented.

These data must be accessible to all members of the company who are involved in customer relations in a comprehensible and rapid manner. This pooling is essential to enable everyone to be as effective and relevant as possible in an interaction,

They must be classified in such a way as to clearly identify all the relationship history between the customer and the company, from the first point of contact to any complaints made to the after-sales service. Here, the objective is to provide an optimal customization, in order to offer constantly the solution most suited to the specific needs expressed during the customer journey,

But the analysis of the data collected does not stop with individual treatment of consumers: it also allows for wider statistical analysis. For example, in the case of an e-commerce site, by studying on a large scale the pages explored by Internet users, it is possible to propose more personalized offers.

The Big Data and its promises therefore seem to bring companies to 360-degree knowledge of their customers, allowing finesse and a speed of execution leading to the satisfaction of the consumers. But is this really sufficient for optimal customer satisfaction?

Managing the human and the limits of Big Data

Is analyzing digital data enough to summarize a customer journey? Customer experience and the resulting satisfaction extend far beyond the visible points of contact with a company. How many consumers, disappointed by a product, do not take the time to report it and still continue to be loyal to the same company by habit, then making their dissatisfaction invisible?

The Big Data relies on a huge but dehumanized and sometimes meaningless data collection. Information about the frequency of purchase or the average basket of consumers does not say anything about their emotions or the expression of a formal opinion. Indeed, a customer who does not renew a purchase online can just as disappointed with the quality of the product as delivery times!

It is important to bear in mind that data collection does not replace listening to the customer’s “voice”. While the former allows an undeniable improvement in the relations between a company and its consumers, the second gives meaning to the data collected and refines their interpretation,

Human behaviour and the resulting emotions cannot be synthesized into simple data. It seems therefore necessary to couple Big Data and harvest more traditional feedback to improve customer satisfaction in depth.

For companies, the challenge is to seize the huge opportunities offered by Big Data, and to couple them with a careful and regular listening to the feedback of their consumers: in short, not to forget the human dimension in their management Of customer satisfaction!

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