I would love to start this article by telling an incident. I and my friend were at a salon shop and speaking to the barber. During the course of talking, suddenly my friend asked him whether he has some system or notebook to store customer data and feedback. To which barber replied 'Why do I need that?' and 'I know everybody in my mind'. Then my friend convinced him about its use case and that is a different story. This incident prompted me to write this article.
First of all, let us create a situation what kind of value-addition customer data generates? Say we fill petrol to our bike regularly in the nearby bunk. We usually fill before going to the office. Think from a petrol bunk point of view. There will be many customers like this. This is the simple daily routine to many but not for petrol bunk. Petrol bunk can extract infinite information from this. Let's see!
Collect all visit logs of customers- This should include their work location
Their time of petrol filling
Their vehicle type
Just above three columns in excel are more than enough. See what we can do with this. When you take any data, always look for patterns.
The whole thing we call 'Science' is just pattern finding in grand variable of things
Patterns from the above data can be :
Customers with same office timings
Customer waiting time and we can subcategorize them based on timing
Average fuel spending and map that to vehicle type
Weekend vs Weekdays consumption
Intraday variations etc.
After finding a pattern,identify problems
Problems from the above pattern can be :
Which set of customers has more waiting period?
Human resource deficit at the peak time
Cash management or cash flow at peak time
Cash deficit in trough time
Customer footfall decrease
Ease of payment
Space available for waiting time
Attracting customers in lag time etc.
You know the problem,then Solve !
Solutions to the above problem can be :
Note: Solutions are in the same order as the problem above
Have a dedicated line for prime customers/incentivize them like discounts for waiting time
Hire part-time labours during peak time
Dedicated human resource for cash management
Sell allied products like a lubricant, free air check/restroom facilities
Increase mode of payment
Make unproductive spaces productive
Prime membership/Coupons/carwash etc