Manage your customer database

Building your customer database

Guide

You can use information already held about your customers to build a database. This information could come from manual or computerised systems. It is a good idea to check the accuracy of this data, before compiling your database.

Think about how to find out who your best and worst customers are and what they buy from you.

If building your database involves the processing of personal data, you will be expected to comply with the Data Protection Act 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR). The most relevant principles are that you must:

  • process personal data fairly and lawfully
  • only collect personal data for specified purposes
  • ensure that personal data is accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date

Structuring your data

If you are selling to business markets, you could compile information about:

  • what they do - industry sector, public or private sector, turnover, number of employees and location
  • their buying behaviour - how they place orders, their size and frequency
  • names of contacts within a company

If you are selling to consumers, you could compile information about:

  • your customers' buying behaviour, including product usage and brand loyalty
  • their age, gender, occupation and approximate income

When compiling information, make sure that you comply with data protection legislation, including the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)