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Sprouts seeks to apply customer analytics

Sprouts Farmers Market is working this year to layer customer analytics on top of the current item-level analytics the company performs, CMO and CIO Steve Black said during a panel presentation at the National Retail Federation "Big Show" on Monday.

“The future is one-to-one marketing, and you can’t do one-to-one marketing until you have a 360-degree view of the customer,” Black said.


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Sprouts last year rolled out item-level analytics software to all of its stores from Manthan Systems, and this year is planning to debut customer-analytics technology, he said.

The Phoenix-based natural-foods retailer currently does not have a loyalty program, and does not have all the data it would like to about its shoppers, Black explained. One of the biggest opportunities Sprouts sees in delving deeper into customer analytics is in retaining and recapturing lost shoppers — especially the “silent” ones who leave without ever voicing a complaint, he said.

“One of the thing we want to do with customer analytics is to know when we lost a customer, and what we can do to get that customer back." 

In addition, as the company moves forward with combined customer analytics and item-level analytics, it could gain the ability to share more data with vendors, who “today have very little visibility into customer buying habits,” Black said.

Sprouts could also use the data to help in merchandising its stores. “Our category managers have been hungry for this for a long time,” he said.

The panel, which was moderated by Anand Ganesh, head of analytics at Manthan Systems, also included representatives from Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores and women’s fashion retailer Charming Charlie.

The NRF 103rd Convention and Expo is taking place this week at the Jacob Javits Center in New York.

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