It’s harder than ever for marketers to maintain consumer trust around data privacy, especially as data regulations continue to rapidly evolve. And the blowback is real—a new survey from business software analysis firm GetApp reveals four out of five consumers have actually stopped doing business with a company because of their data privacy practices.
This newly released data uncovers four fundamental disconnects between the way marketers are managing data privacy and what consumers expect of businesses collecting and using their data.
1. Consumers want more control over how their data is used, but most companies aren’t providing clear or easy options
Consumers have become increasingly savvy about the amount and type of data that companies collect about them—and they’re taking it personally. Over two-thirds (68 percent) of consumers want more control over how companies use their information. However, only 34 percent of marketers say their company currently offers customers the option to access, rectify, or delete their data. Only 37 percent say their company allows customers to opt-out of data sharing.
2. Consumers are searching for companies that value their privacy, but most companies aren’t meeting consumers where they are
Only 33 percent of companies engage in minimal data collection, despite consumers rating this as a top factor in gaining their trust. A majority (82 percent) of consumers also feel that it’s important for companies to explicitly state how their data will be used. However, just 38 percent of marketers say they provide this level of detail.
3. Consumers are willing to share more qualitative feedback and reviews, but marketers are overly focused on capturing demographics
Marketers are missing an opportunity to use customer sentiment data, such as product reviews, social media comments, and customer survey responses. An overwhelming 85 percent of consumers are willing to share sentiment data, yet just 36 percent of marketers collect it. Sentiment data is a subset of first-party data, which has become increasingly valuable given the impending end of third-party cookies.
4. Marketers struggle with regulatory awareness even more than consumers, making both groups vulnerable
Consumers and marketers both believe the government bears the most burden for protecting data privacy. However, compared to marketers, nearly twice as many consumers believe individuals are most responsible.
Fewer than half of marketers surveyed consider themselves very or extremely familiar with the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) or the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), currently the two most important comprehensive privacy laws. Intriguingly, consumers showed slightly more familiarity with these regulations than marketers
To bridge these privacy divides, businesses should reconsider their approach to data collection and privacy options.