customer insight (consumer insight)

Customer insight, also known as consumer insight, is the understanding and interpretation of customer data, behaviors and feedback into conclusions that can be used to improve product development and customer support. Insights are the actionable motivations behind the wants and needs of customers that can be used to expand features, develop new products and create consumer benefits. Collecting customer insights attempts to align customers' needs with a company's business goals.

This first step in using customer insights is data collection. Customer insights can be collected from a variety of sources including market research, customer service data, focus groups, purchase history and product reviews. The data must then be translated into information that can be interpreted into business actions. Interpretations of data should uncover why customers perform specific actions, their underlying motivations and desires and future consumer projections.

Customer insights are important for organizations as they provide an opportunity for personalizing products and services to customers. Techniques that can be used to aid customer insight strategy include customer segmentation, customer journey mapping and surveys. Organizations can even recruit outside experts, such as anthropologists or psychologists, to help with the analysis of consumer information.

How to use customer insights

Consumer insights can be used for many applications, including:

  • Developing strategies for how to best present help center or support information.
  • Choosing which types of products to focus on creating or expanding in the future.
  • Sending marketing and promotional material to specific segments of customers that will resonate with the content.
  • Updating products with new features or tools after observing the challenges or problem areas consumers have reported.
This was last updated in March 2019

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