What Is Customer Context and How Can Brands Use It?

Gladly Team

Read Time

4 minute read

The best ecommerce brands in the world rely heavily on personalization in their customer experiences, informed by consumer insights and data. McKinsey research shows that brands with strong personalization strategies generate 40% more revenue than their underperforming counterparts. At the heart of this success is brands’ ability to identify customer context, giving them a clear picture of when and how to target shoppers to create the most value possible.

Fully understanding the context within the shopper’s journey takes accurate data and the capacity to generate clear customer profiles. In doing so, these tools act as a roadmap to help brands pinpoint when to upsell, offer promotions, or apply other tactics to get shoppers to engage more with their brand.

Let’s unpack exactly what customer context looks like in practice and how you can use your support center to dive deeper into the minds of your shoppers.

What Is Customer Context?

Customer context is a brand’s understanding of when and how shoppers make the decisions that move them along their purchasing journey.

Why Is It Important To Understand Customers’ Context?

Understanding customer context allows brands to more deeply understand and better target consumers at points when they can complete a sale or improve the customer relationship.

By focusing on this context, brands embrace a more customer-centric culture that better positions them to create lasting, valuable relationships with shoppers. Customers respond well to this approach. As our Customer Expectations Report shows, 66% of consumers prefer brands that know them and can recommend things they might like. This requires understanding customer context to know when and what to sell to shoppers.


Customer Expectations Report

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Understanding Customer Context Examples in Practice

To decipher customer context with your own shoppers, use these three support center tactics so you can best provide the transparency your brand needs to succeed.

1. Gather and store customer details

Your shoppers are engaging with your advertising, browsing your web pages, and interacting with your service agents well before they make any purchases. If you can get explicit permission from these customers, you can use all of that pre-purchase first-party data to understand what most drives these individuals to shop and learn from those insights to encourage more sales in the future. Collecting these details with Gladly equips you to gather, store, and manage all that data efficiently and securely for your staff to access in the future.

This kind of detail allows brands to deliver personable and anticipatory service, as footwear brand KURU discovered when they started using Gladly. For example, routing customers to agents who will recognize them leads to “a much better experience from our customer’s point of view.” Agents can now draw faster connections and respond to concerns more readily.

2. Create customer profiles

With all the information you gather on your customers, Gladly can help you develop individual profiles that give you a clearer picture of your brand’s ideal shopper. With enough profiles on hand, you’ll see recurring behaviors that will start to reveal gaps in your experience that could be lucrative to fill.

Customer profiles organize shopping history, personal details, relationships, and, of course, the conversations you’ve had with them across channels. The deeper the data, the better the customer context, allowing agents to be more proactive and work toward solutions with less friction. For instance, an agent can notice that a customer buys the same products once a month, creating an opportunity to set up reminders to repeat that order or even send a coupon for future purchases — making the customer feel seen and appreciated.

3. Identify patterns and moments of opportunity

Out of these details and profiles, savvy brands start to recognize what aspects of their customer experiences are most successful at influencing purchasing and what they can improve. This is the culmination of seeking out customer context: helping you pinpoint the customer mindset and when it’s most appropriate to engage them further.

Meeting Customers in Context With Gladly

With Gladly, ecommerce brands have a holistically customer-centric platform out of the box, equipped with powerful automation to collect customer information and make it immediately actionable for agents. Agents themselves will be so attuned to their shoppers using these insightful details and Gladly-generated profiles that they’ll be able to identify the perfect customer context to upsell and cross-sell for higher-margin sales.

To see how Gladly can give you the insight to truly understand customer context in practice, try a demo.