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Big Data & Advanced Analytics

We help clients unleash advanced analytics on rich data to turn customer insights into retail excellence.

Direct customer relationships are a privilege, but they also generate massive amounts of data. This wealth of information holds the potential to drive real frontline differentiation, if retailers have the right tools and approaches to make the most of this unique asset.

Our analytical experts have the knowledge and the practical experience to work with disparate data sources, generate relevant insights, and derive a rich fact base to support business decisions for all key retail business processes.

What we do

Projects for clients often touch on the following topics:

  • Insights-driven retail merchandizing: Based on transaction or loyalty data, we conduct targeted data mining to help retailers make informed decisions about pricing, promotions, and assortment management.
  • Insights-driven retail marketing: To make marketing investments where they really matter, we help clients apply advanced analytics to customer lifecycle management and marketing mix modeling.
  • Insights-driven retail operations: We help retailers pinpoint improvement opportunities across the entire supply chain, from sourcing and purchasing to in-store availability management.

Who we are

Our experts are linked through a global network, the Consumer and Marketing Analytics Center (CMAC). CMAC is anchored by a growing number of regional hubs and can be accessed by teams in any of McKinsey's 100 offices worldwide.

Our growing global team of dedicated CMAC affiliates has successfully brought CMAC methodology to retail clients in DIY, apparel, and grocery, covering topics ranging from category management to pricing and promotions.

Featured capabilities

CMAC experts draw upon pioneering solutions. For example, the Insights Factory is an integrated toolkit that generates new insights from existing client and third-party data, lends decision support to executives, and monitors business performance. The Insights Factory includes a category-level Localization Scorecard that helps retailers tailor their assortment to regional needs.

Download the CMAC brochure (PDF-8.55 MB)

The Pricing Module integrates historical data, competitive analyses, and information on the impact of a given item on overall price perception. Based on this data, the tool calculates the optimal retail price. It can also pinpoint specific SKUs for value-maximizing promotions.

Specific tools we use to help retailers include the CMAC Heatmap and a five-step improvement program. The Heatmap enables retailers to gauge their performance at all intersections of relevant data sources, such as loyalty cards, and business levers, such as repeat purchase rate. Based on these diagnostic insights, we use the five-step Improvement Program to guide clients on their way from product centricity to shopper centricity.

We develop and refine our tools in close cooperation with clients, and we create tailor-made solutions to address new business functions, data sources, and challenges.

Learn more about our Marketing & Sales Practice.

Featured experts

Tim McGuire

Senior Partner, Toronto

Peter Breuer

Senior Partner, Cologne

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