Learn about single customer view (SCV) and deliver more personalized experiences

Learn about single customer view and deliver more personalized experiences

Modern marketing teams have more access than ever to technology platforms and data sources. But more is not always better. These tools need to come together in a cohesive, unified way that produces a holistic view of customer needs and behaviors.

The great news is that there’s a way to provide a seamless, engaging experience across channels for customers, as well as a strategy for harnessing so much data into a single integrated source. It’s called a single customer view (SCV).

Sometimes called a unified customer view or 360-degree customer view, SCV provides a clear, comprehensive picture of a customer’s journey across multiple touchpoints.

In this blog, you'll learn about:

What is a single customer view?

A single customer view is a way to collect and combine all the information you have about customers and prospects into one source. SCV pulls data from sources such as a customer’s mobile activity, retail store visits, and online shopping history and knits them into a map that can be used to customize the next steps of the customer’s journey.

Single customer view benefits

Using an SCV saves teams time, effort, and costs, and it addresses many of the common issues that a less unified approach can surface.

Seamless multichannel user experiences

In a given week or day, a customer might come into contact with a brand and its messaging through multiple different channels, platforms, and contexts. A multichannel approach to marketing seeks to meet customers at each of these touchpoints with timely, relevant, and customized experiences.

Challenges to this approach include concerns about the quality of data, coordinating data in a timely way, over-investing or under-investing in a particular channel, understanding how datasets impact the relevance of others in the mix, and keeping track of changes to data streams.

But not to worry — SCV can help create a seamless user experience by anticipating these challenges and actually helping to solve them.

Personalized user experiences on every channel

Today’s digital-first and mobile-first customers expect ease, speed, and convenience as a baseline. Personalization of a product or service makes the customer experience more powerful, relevant, and memorable, and if it’s delivered seamlessly, it can significantly boost brand loyalty.

For customers, this could be the experience of signing into their favorite streaming service and having a curated list of videos ready to watch or being served the kind of content they love when they engage on social media. To make this happen, marketers need lots of data in real time. SCV makes this up-to-the-minute curation possible by combining all data points into one elegant view automatically, providing tailored suggestions just right for each customer.

Better user data

Collecting data from every channel means painting a more detailed, nuanced picture of the customer. Data collected for an SCV approach is cleaner because it’s not duplicated. The data is also more accessible and useful because it’s contextualized within the whole customer view, rather than siloed or isolated. Having better user data helps marketers make smarter decisions.

Improved audience segments

An SCV approach improves audience segmentation. Effective messaging and product placement involves making sure that efforts are driven toward interested parties — and accurate audience segments are vital to getting this kind of placement and timing right. SCV makes it possible to better understand the needs and wants of groups of people based on demographic information and then customize services and products for them.

A clear view of each persona’s buying journey

Getting a clear view of a customer’s journey ensures touchpoint opportunities aren’t missed or overlooked. Mapping this customer journey helps surface pain points and chances for interaction, but it can be difficult to monitor things like conversion or understand reasons for abandonment. SCV can help by adding insight to any dark spots in the journey with other related and relevant data.

Game-changing customer service

No one likes having to contact customer service — the process can be long and frustrating. But customer service is, in many ways, part of lifecycle marketing. An informed and nuanced SCV can help service representatives deliver a superb, customized experience for that specific customer.

Using a single customer view lets your marketing team create smooth, delightful, personalized customer experiences across every channel, and it provides insights to help shape products and services to satisfy real needs and preferences.

How to create a single customer view

Creating an SCV means crafting a process that integrates data from different channels, intelligently pulls it together, and provides a holistic, unified view of the customer and their journey.

Collect and organize data

Pull together and organize as many quality data sources as possible — the more data, the better. This can include demographic information, preferences, purchase histories, and more. Organize data according to demographics and along a customer journey.

Resolve identities in a CDP

A customer data platform (CDP) collects, consolidates, and aligns first-party data into a unified picture of the customer. A CDP gathers this data from other software platforms within an organization to support marketers in developing ideal customer experiences.

Share and strategize

Make sure customer profiles are accessible throughout the organization and establish a clear strategy for how you’re going to use them.

Common single customer view hurdles

There are some common hurdles to implementing an SCV, ranging from incomplete or low-quality data to regulatory requirements that hamper data use.

Siloed data

Siloed or isolated data is information pulled from only one or a few sources, without perspective or insights from other data points, which creates lopsided and inaccurate takeaways. A good CDP unifies data, knitting it into a useful context with other datasets.


Data privacy laws can create speed bumps for marketers because customers can give and revoke consent to use their data at any time. A good SCV system is built to accommodate these compliance requirements and give teams a clear picture of the parameters within which they’re allowed to work, ensuring a level of trust for customers and marketers alike.

Legacy systems

Legacy systems can make SCV difficult — obscuring insights, siloing information, and not always being able to differentiate between quality and bad data. Some customer relationship management (CRM) and master data management (MDM) solutions may help brands build a single customer view, but they struggle to make that view available to other systems for insights and action.


CDPs are better options than other technologies that stop at the creation of the single customer view without making that data accessible elsewhere. Modernizing systems to enable SCV can work wonders for an organization and support more accurate — and actionable — customer journey maps.

How to use single customer views for marketing

Single customer view is a powerful concept, but how does it apply to the daily aims of a marketing team? Here are some common use cases to demonstrate the capabilities of SCV.

  1. Personalized content for a customer can be sent to them while shopping, offering discounts based on time and location.
  2. Product recommendations become tailored when marketers understand how demographic data, preferences, and shopping habits combine to illuminate customer needs and wants.
  3. More targeted campaigns are enabled, allowing marketers to create more relevant touchpoints and develop cross-sell and upsell opportunities.
  4. Customer lifecycle marketing is supported, empowering marketers to customize campaigns based on detailed customer segment information.

Single customer view FAQ

What types of data does SCV use?

Data in a single customer view can include:

What’s the difference between a single customer view, a unified customer view, and a 360-degree view?

There really isn’t one. Terms like single customer view, unified customer view, and 360-degree customer view are often used interchangeably to describe the same concept — the need to bring customer data together into consolidated profiles for better insights and personalization.

Get started with your single customer view

Get started with your single customer view

Using an SCV lets your marketing team create smooth, delightful, personalized customer experiences across every channel, and provides insights to help shape products and services to satisfy real needs and preferences.

Adobe can make a single customer view a reality with Adobe Real-Time Customer Data Platform. Start by auditing and prioritizing your data, engaging with departments, and looking at systems across the organization to see what needs to be upgraded. Build your strategy on the foundation of a strong CDP — and reap the benefits of a rich and ready single customer view.

Take a look at this overview video to see how seamless the process can be.