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Customer-Centricity: Fast-Tracking Digital Transformation in Retail

Alongside everything else that’s happened in 2020, the demand for digital transformation in retail has been fast-tracked. Key to this digital transformation is the need for retailers to be customer-centric in everything they do.


Emerging from rapidly shifting consumer demands during 2020, retailers have long recognised the need to become more customer-centric. Digitally native competitors to long-standing retailers - unencumbered by the cost of a legacy portfolio of physical retail sites - have emerged and grown their business at the expense of the incumbents over the past decade.

Yet until now, it has been a gradual shift.

Events during 2020 - in particular national and local-level lockdowns right around the world, accompanied by what is emerging to be the hardest hitting recession for a century - has compounded the need for retail to digitally transform around their customers.

Following the lead of truly digital-first brands - the likes of Gymshark, Deliveroo, AO.com, and Ocado - retailers are now questioning how well they truly know their customers, outside of their physical, brick and mortar comfort zones.

These questions centre around four key areas.


This article and video are an adaptation from Ben Foulkes' on-demand video on customer-centric marketing. Watch the full on-demand video for insightful, actionable takeaways learnt from today's truly customer-centric businesses.


Getting your data in order

A brand’s level of consumer-understanding is not only linked to the data they have access to, but how structured and available that data is to use. Ensuring data can be used by an entire business, in order to inform decisions and actions, is vital.

Revenue driving

What is the return for a brand investing to become more customer-centric? Being able to measure customer lifetime value, and the affect of different activities on it, is incredibly important.

Business impact

What is the business impact? For example, the role of discounting for a retailer may change when becoming more customer-centric, such as how that retailer approaches Black Friday. Business mindsets, and - importantly - how a business gauges success will need to evolve.

What is incrementality?

The big question for all businesses is: is what we’re doing working? Measuring all actions and activities a business carries out on their impact to the business’ bottom line is how truly customer-centric businesses ensure what they do contributes to their overall success.

In this on-demand video, Ben goes into further detail around how brands have seen success through customer-centric models. The first part of Epsilon-Conversant’s customer-centricity video series, it’s an important watch for anyone seeking to understand how they can help shift their company to a more customer-centric model.