Salesforce Research surveyed more than 7,000 consumers and business buyers to understand how the connected world is creating a smarter customer. Out today, the State of the Connected Customer report shares these findings.

With unprecedented access to technology, data, and choices, the connected customer can purchase anything at anytime and from any place. Ubiquitous mobile devices and permanent connections to social platforms allow empowered customers to take control over their own buying journeys.

Here are a few ways marketers can adjust their strategies to put the connected customer first.

  • Make mobile a priority.
    Millennial consumers are 2.2x more likely than baby boomers/traditionalists consumers to consider smartphones as essential or preferable when researching and evaluating purchases. Among consumers of all ages surveyed, 57% say that it's absolutely critical or very important for companies to provide an easy-to-use mobile experience.

  • Prove you know your customers to earn loyalty.
    Seventy-two percent of consumers expect companies to understand their unique needs and expectations. If customers don't feel understood by a company, it only takes a click of a button to find another brand and revoke their loyalty. In fact, half of consumers say they are likely to switch brands if a company doesn't anticipate their needs.

  • Leverage changing attitudes towards customer data to deliver personalized marketing.
    Fifty-seven percent of consumers agree they're willing to share data with companies that send personalized offers and discounts. By 2020, 75% of business buyers expect companies to anticipate their needs and make relevant suggestions.

To learn more about connected customers - their unique preferences, purchasing behaviors, and expectations of companies by 2020 - download the full State of the Connected Customer report.