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Transactional data, why is it important?

Transactional data describes the events that occur in our day-to-day interactions. If our master data is describing the relationships that we have and the key business entities that we’re doing business with, it then helps us to understand and interpret the transactions that those relationships conduct with us.

For example, let’s start to look at a sales transaction. We need to capture the information about that and append it to each customer that’s purchased something from us. Obviously, it’s imperative that we get the transactional data correct in our organisation, otherwise,

  • We can’t actually facilitate the various different orders that are happening
  • We can’t keep accurate books and records which hinders us from reporting financial returns and things of that nature
  • Other departments have business processes that relies on the transactional data so it has to be accurate
Taken from Mcdonald’s annual report 2020 – I think we can all agree that if we don’t keep our transaction data in check, the numbers in red might start to look very different (and inaccurate)..

So making sure that all of our transactional data is top-notch is one of the easiest ways to ensure we have high operational efficiency, we have low costs and we have a lower risk of things like customer dissatisfaction from failed transactions and failed deliveries, etc. All these can be prevented.

What everyone’s talking about

Now, one other reason why you want high-quality transactional data is because you can start to mine that data for insights into customer behaviour. And this is where some of the later concepts around big data might come in. But you think of organizations like Amazon that see such huge amounts of transactional data, different purchases, purchase patterns and behaviours, and then they’re able to use that to drive up revenues by saying customers who bought that also purchased X or Y. So you can use this to drive up cross-selling in your organization.

Thanks to Mcdonald’s keeping track of my purchases, I don’t have to tattoo on my arm a receipt that describes which outlet I always frequent and what I tend to order..