Big data helps restaurants know their customers like never before

Updated 2017-02-27 16:00:28 CGTN
Big data allows businesses to gain unprecedented knowledge about  their customers.

Big data allows businesses to gain unprecedented knowledge about their customers.

China's massive services sector makes up the majority of its economy. It is experiencing huge transformations and upgrades…and just like many great changes in history, it starts from the smallest of things. A restaurant dish, for example.‍

The owner of the Yufeiyu restaurant in Shanghai told CGTN that 65 percent of people who order a certain dish are female. Then he elaborated on his extensive knowledge about his customer base. "15.7 percent of customers here during the Spring Festival were interested in financial news. 13.6 percent play computer games." said Liu Feng, owner of Yufeiyu.

How does he know? His insights come from a service called Koubei, provided by Ant Financial, Alibaba Group's financial arm. "We track people's payment history on Taobao and also offline payments. By knowing what they buy, we can know who they are, what they like and also their shopping habits," said Chen Sheng, senior director of Koubei.

The service allows restaurants to know their clients like never before. They now know who has kids, who drives cars, who usually brings their parents out for dinner and who likes fashion. Business owners are now customizing their promotion tactics for each individual.

Liu Feng said "we now know who within our three kilometer radius are inactive customers, and we can push coupons to their cellphones. Each coupon is different according to each customer's preferences."

This is precision marketing based on big data. High-tech developments like this are what the government is pushing for. Competition in the services sector is now going beyond price wars. In this new era, it is all about who knows their customers better.

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