What data tells us about customer retention during Covid



Customer retention is important to every business, but retention is hard earned, especially when a single bad customer experience can now be easily amplified to a mass audience in seconds.

Ground control data is an Australian technology company that helps advertisers understand, optimize and predict marketing results by partnering with the world’s leading digital consumer intelligence platforms. Two of Ground Control’s partners co-authored a report on the key drivers of customer loyalty, using a combination of social listening data from Brand watch and research data based on panels of GWI from the United States and the United Kingdom.

Here, we summarize the main findings of the report, but in addition, we highlight new insights using Australian data from Brandwatch and GWI, and take it deeper with a platform for research analysis, Pi Datametrics. Obtain a copy of the original full report here.

International perspectives

  • Complaints about a bad customer experience are far more important than people who go out of their way to show loyalty or advocacy. People expect a great experience and you really have to stand out to be celebrated online.
  • Delivery issues are the main reason consumers shy away from big retail brands, while affordable prices spur advocacy.
  • Sustainability is becoming more of a hot topic, especially with too much plastic being used in shipping and packaging.
  • Consumers love to support small businesses, but have been forced to shop at department stores due to the pandemic due to logistics issues.

The past 18 months have helped boost consumers’ value seeking behaviors. Survey data showed that in mid-2020, 67% of consumers said they would delay large purchases, and in October, 39% of consumers said they were actively looking for discounts or deals. in the past three months.

Meanwhile in Australia

Some nuances of the Australian context differ slightly from the US and UK data.

  • Locally, if the detractors are more virulent than the partisans, it is quite close.
  • While shipping is also a big concern, it’s the poor customer service that really drives people to engage in negative social posts in Australia.

Reflecting international data, 68% of Australians say they would delay large purchases and 35% of Australian consumers actively wait for discounts or offers before buying. Consumers say they would wait for an offer or discount, rather than switching to a cheaper brand or cheaper version of their favorite brand’s product.

Research provides a layer of intent

By following the search trends of hundreds of keywords related to shipping, delivery and major e-commerce players over the past three years, we can see that in Australia, packaging / shipping searches eco-friendly have more than doubled in the past year, reflecting a combination of consumers looking for stores that offer this and the retailer itself finding suppliers.

There was also an even greater increase in demand for same-day delivery, which rose by more than 250% in Australia last year. While there is expected research for same day flower and gift delivery, there is a wide range of product categories where consumer demand is high for same day delivery: groceries, alcohol, clothing, pet supplies, mattresses, plants, electronics and pharmacy.


There are consistent themes in the markets around the factors that drive customer loyalty. While Australia respects some key elements, there are local nuances to pay attention to, and in particular, it’s the quality of customer service that causes people to shout about your brand online, for better or worse. for the worst. The demand for click-and-collect, same day and next day delivery services is undoubtedly affected by stuck communities, but is expected to result in longer term behavior change.

Offering the right options, the right delivery partners, and making it easy to find on your website will be big factors in helping consumers perceive customer service, especially if it’s associated with a discount. Even with all of the best processes in place to deliver a great customer experience, there will inevitably be occasional slips. Make sure you have the means to keep track of how your brand is being discussed online so that you can quickly dampen the flames of customer controversy. Brandwatch and Pi Datametrics can help you keep an automated eye on social media and research.

About the methodology

Social, survey and research data complement each other in studying consumer behavior. Social data enables an unfiltered view of spontaneous consumer public opinion, and thanks to Brandwatch, it’s possible to track how that changes over time with up to 10 years of data and over 1,400 billion posts. . Research is the ultimate indicator of behavioral intention, and we can see if the nature of the volume of online conversations translates into a shift in the way consumers search for topics or brands.

Survey data allows researchers to ask specific questions that can help explain why certain trends are seen in social and research data, and it crucially provides in-depth demographic data that is lacking in other sources. . This triangulation with user-friendly platforms opens up a whole world of opportunities for modern research teams, internal or external, to conduct agile, profitable and actionable research, which can be adopted by retailers themselves to keep their finger on the pulse. the pulse of consumers. Learn more about Ground control data.



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