How to Choose the Best Customer Data Platform (CDP) in 2021

Whether you sell B2C or B2B, the behaviors and preferences of your customers change from time to time. It’s vital to understand customers in order to increase customer satisfaction and bring success to customers. Finding the right CDP for your business isn’t an easy process. This is why we decided to put together this guide to help you easily identify and choose the best Customer Data Platform for your business.

Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) help businesses get a better understanding of their customers and create more accurate and personalized marketing campaigns. CDPs do this by consolidating data from various customer touchpoints. Therefore it is capable of creating a single 360-degree view of each customer that shows how they interact with your brand. Gartner describes a CDP as:

“A marketing system that combines the company’s customer data from marketing and other channels to enable customer modeling and to optimize the timing and targeting of messages and offers.”

choose the best customer data platform

When is the Right Time to Invest in a Customer Data Platform?

You know you need a CDP when you are collecting customer data on various channels and you need to unify this data to understand what insights they can provide about your customers. Here are a few signs that your business would benefit from investing in a customer data platform:

  1. You’re looking for more efficient ways to make data-backed decisions.
  2. You want a 360-degree view of your customers in a single place.
  3. Your business needs to predict the next actions of each customer using AI and machine learning tools.
  4. You are shifting your focus from a multichannel to an omnichannel strategy.
  5. You are a medium or large business that wants to grow its profit through customer success.

Steps to Choose the Best Customer Data Platform (CDP)

When choosing a CDP, you should go through the following steps to choose the best Customer Data Platform matching you.

1. Define Use Cases and KPIs

Define what you expect to achieve from the Customer Data Platform. What is the main reason you want to purchase a CDP? Describe the final results you wish to achieve after implementing the CDP in your company. Remember that consolidating customer data is just a step on the path to your final goals. To choose the best Customer Data Platform, you should define your use cases ahead of time.

Also, define the quantitive results you aim to achieve by implementing a CDP in your company. Without measuring the right KPIs/metrics against specific goals, you cannot build a rapport with the decision-makers in your organization since different parts of the organization care about different issues.

By defining your use cases and KPIs, you can estimate the ROI on your CDP. Good CDPs should reduce the time your engineers spend building integrations between tools, which can result in enormous cost savings.

2. Consider the Requirements

Customer Data Platforms aren’t there just to consolidate data. There’s more to the CDPs. Therefore, you also need to consider the other requirements and features for your CDP. For example, getting insights on every piece of data that you’re collecting happens with the data-tracking plan features. Other requirements and features could be getting a full view of the customer journey, being GDPR and CCPA compliant, and having top-notch security.

Go through the pricing pages of the CDPs in your list and review their list of features. This way you can evaluate the best CDPs that fulfill your requirements and features.

3. Engage Stakeholders Throughout the Process

Without the support and engagement of stakeholders, the implementation of CDP will fall into a loop of unfinished internal interactions.

The stakeholders are anyone who is collecting and/or analyzing data from your customers. It differs from company to company, but as an example, it could be the representatives from these departments and teams: sales, marketing, support, customer success, and technology.

Let your stakeholders know the benefits of CDPs and what you expect from each stakeholder. Let them know why you’re looking to purchase a CDP and what you expect to get out of it.

List the tools and sources your company uses to collect data. It could be analytics tools like Google Analytics, or advertising tools like Facebook, or online form tools like Formaloo. These are the tools you will integrate with your Customer Data Platform.


Choosing a CDP isn’t a quick process. You need to make sure you’re doing your due diligence to find the right CDP based on your specific tools, use-cases, requirements, and features. After that, you will be able to get more value out of your data and get a better understanding of your customers.

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