Advanced Computing in the Age of AI | Tuesday, April 16, 2024

MasterCard Translates Card Swipes to Consumer Know-How 

As the digital marketplace explodes Andy Mantis, group head of Business Solutions for MasterCard Advisors, says that retailers must work harder than ever to stake its claim to an ever-shrinking world of e-commerce. But as MasterCard shared at the recent World Retail Congress Asia Pacific 2013, they’re hard at work to translate billions of credit card swipes into meaningful information that can drive a retailer’s business.

“One of our key strengths at MasterCard is our 360-degree view of consumer spending across channels.” And as Mantis explains in the video below, this opens the door for retailers to paint a complete picture of consumer and competitor activity.

At the core of this image are 160 million transactions that MasterCard records and collects from its customers every hour of the day.

“The key is taking (those data) and turning it into micro and macro views.” Being able to apply that in a way that’s meaningful for our merchant consumers really is how you break big data down into small chunks.

Mantis says that MasterCard’s goal is to spot hidden opportunities for retailers through this information to let the retailer know what’s happening within their store as well as the behavior of the consumers when they’re outside.

For most companies, this means taking a look into websites and mobile apps as well as customer behavior when they’re in a brick and mortar store.

This means that companies can better make decisions about where to find their customers, or where best to open up a new store.

“A large homegoods provider that was part of a coalition loyalty program really thought they had a significant share of their existing customer spend,” Mantis says. “We work with them to identify the overall opportunity—again, taking that view of customer spend outside their store, we spotted hundreds of millions of dollars of opportunity, worked with them to update the way they understood their customers and marketed to them, and at the end of the day their returns were staggering.”

In another example, Mantis described a global specialty apparel retailer that was looking to make the jump from outlet stores to smaller shops within mainstream shopping malls to expand. Through analysis of spend data, Mantis says that MasterCard helped them to identify malls where they ideal customers shop to help them plan this transition.

But as Mantis notes, to MasterCard, big data does not equal big brother, meaning despite the amount of personal information that retailers are now looking to tap, the information remains anonymous.