A mobile app for collecting data on consumer purchasing behavior

About NCP

The National Consumer Panel (NCP) is an organization that collects data on consumer purchasing behavior. It was born out of a partnership between the two leading consumer insight providers in the United States, IRI and Nielsen. NCP analyzes a sample set of U.S. consumer’s purchasing behavior, providing companies with actionable insights

Problem

NCP’s panel is made up of approximately 1,500 consumers who have partnered with NCP to track and report on their purchase behaviors. Historically, NCP lent each participant a barcode scanner that was kept in the individual’s home. When the participant returned home they would scan each item they purchased and manually enter data, like which member of the household purchased the item and the location of the purchase. The process was time consuming and tedious. NCP needed to streamline and modernize data collection; they needed a mobile app that would allow participants to scan, input, and upload their purchases using a personal device.

Solution

NCP approached Exadel because of our ability to assist in prototyping and providing proof-of-concepts. Exadel and NCP worked together to brainstorm a strategic direction aligned with their company goals that could then be followed with a working prototype, which would form the foundation of the mobile app.

Exadel utilized the following technologies:

Urban Airship: Exadel used Urban Airship to enable NCP to manually push notifications to its users.

Red Laser: Exadel integrated Red Laser to scan the barcodes (UPCs) on the purchased products, reducing the amount of manual entry.

Flurry/Apps Flyer: Exadel implemented the app analytics tool to track a number of metrics, including: daily app opens, number or users, and usage frequency. Flurry/Apps Flyer tracks detailed in-app behavior metrics, providing valuable data to evaluate the need for future updates.

Results

Exadel developed a mobile app that allows participants to easily and conveniently scan purchases in real time. NCP can now communicate with consumers by messaging them at random or based on their user behavior. Another important feature of the app is its offline functionality, which allows users to continue to utilize the app in bad or low data connection areas. This has made collecting data easier for the participants and NCP. Additionally, because it replaces scanners, the app has reduced NCP’s hardware costs.

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