The retail landscape has been evolving over the past few decades and retailers are finding themselves at a crossroads. No longer can brick-and-mortar stores stand tall and think that they don’t need any changes or advancements. Online retailers, such as Amazon, have entered the scene and are forcing traditional brick-and-mortar stores to rethink their game plan, enter omni-channel.
Omni-channel changed the way retailers think about their stores, physically and through the internet. However, there’s a deeper level that many retailers need to consider. In the article, Data In Omni-Channel Retailing Is About Art, Not Science, Christopher Walton stated “Omni-channel retailing is not about data for data’s sake. It is about leveraging data to create a nonlinear physical expression of art that gives us more probabilistic understanding of the real reasons people want to go somewhere…”
The art of omni-channel offers a vast opportunity for retailers (small, medium and large) to get it right. Data plays a key role in figuring out the next move for retailers to make, however, simply collecting data to have it isn’t going to be sufficient enough. Retailers need to analyze and use the data to uncover what makes the customer tick, what appeals to them online and in the store.
Perhaps certain scents attract customers in through the doors or the art on the walls give a calming feeling, the flow of traffic through a space while perusing the perfect product placement. Retailers need to analyze the entire picture and create a well-rounded environment for the customer to optimize those positive aspects.
Good data is the foundation of a strong plan, but it also requires an artistic mix of trial and error to get it right. One of the key components to obtaining adequate data is understanding your customer traffic. People counting sensors, such as the ClearCount 3D series, offers thermal imaging and 3D video technology to obtain the most accurate traffic data. People counting sensors can detect, track and count individuals entering, exiting and dwelling with precision allowing retailers to formulate and hypothesize their best plan of attack.
Understanding customer traffic flow and peak times that people are shopping in specific stores can be analyzed against web traffic data to uncover patterns and insights about shoppers and how retailers can better cater to them.
A retailer that specializes in business-attire may see a peak in web-traffic on weekdays in the late morning. Around noon, which is often lunch hour for office workers, the same retailer see’s a spike in in-store traffic. When looking at the data it can be assumed that shoppers had browsed the retailers online store prior to going to the store so they know what to purchase.
This data analysis is exactly what retailers need to do in order to properly leverage their data. Gathering the mix of omni-channel data allows retailers to create and implement various plans within stores as a test market and make slight changes until they hit what works, at least for now.
Retailers now have a way to connect the dots between online and physical shopping experiences. Leveraging this data will ultimately assist retailers in understanding their customers shopping behaviors and the emotional sentiment that is felt when consumers shop in physical brick-and-mortar stores.
Start leveraging your data by collecting the most accurate traffic data on your stores by installing a people counting system and Vea analytics reporting platform. Contact a member of the SenSource sales team for a free demo and to find the best technology for your scenario.