Definition

consumer data

Consumer data is the information trail customers leave behind as a result of their Internet use. This data, which sometimes comprises personal information, comes from such sources and channels as social media networks, marketing campaigns, customer service requests, call center communications, online browsing data, mobile applications, purchasing history and preferences, and more.

Companies collect and analyze customer data to attract, engage and retain their most profitable customers as part of a broader customer relationship management strategy. Companies use this information to target relevant advertisements, offers and other products and services to consumers, as well as provide them with a personalized experience based on individual preferences.

Many companies face challenges in walking the fine line between using consumer data to enhance the customer experience while also ensuring they do not breach customer trust or mishandle their personal information, particularly as data privacy and cybersecurity concerns grow.

This was last updated in December 2014

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