It might seem counterintuitive, but the numbers don’t lie – higher store traffic does not directly translate to higher sales volume. If anything, an analysis of the number of customers visiting your store is more often than not a measure of lost opportunity. What makes that analysis important, however, is in shining a light on what elements need to change.
This is the case made in a new whitepaper released by smart retail and security solution provider ETG, whose 3D Traffic people count sensors provide solutions for retailers seeking a deeper understanding of the impact of their efforts to increase store footfall, allowing them to tailor better customer experiences and boost conversion rates.
“Retailers are using the people count solution to improve their customer service levels and their operational efficiency, based on insights on staff allocation, measurable peak hours and demonstrated store performance,” says ETG marketing manager Ms. Fung. “They can assess sales conversion rates of each store and make better management decisions, such as where to position their best salespeople to which stores with lower conversion but with higher traffic in order to enhance their revenues.”
Leveraging people count solutions, retailers can gain actionable and accurate store traffic data that illuminate the insight of customer experience, shopper path, store layout, queue waiting times, window display and marketing campaign performance. Regardless of the scale of the retail outlet or chain, reliable footfall metrics provide retailers with critical insights on store performance, allowing them to predict foot traffic and optimise staffing levels by highlighting areas for improvement – as well as revealing which of their changes are making a difference.
Retailers are now using customer counters to optimise their marketing and operational strategies. A recent testimonial from ETG client 3HK stated that the firm’s people counting solutions had “given all of our stores reliable traffic data and actionable insight on various perspectives including customer experience, sales conversion, marketing campaign performance and window display”. The testimonial shared that sales revenue maximisation had also been made possible by benchmarking sales conversion performance of different 3HK outlets.
“Wherever our clients have branches, we will usually suggest they install the people counting devices at the different locations to compare their performance and obtain benchmarks,” explained Fung. “For example, if a branch has high foot traffic, they can then check if it is the best performing store – and it might not be because the sales conversion may not be up to standard. So the management will better understand the situation, and then can arrange some staff training or apply the appropriate solution to better manage their stores and staff.”
ETG has been operating for almost 15 years in providing software and hardware solutions related to security systems and retail performance. Beyond CCTV surveillance, burglar alarms and security gates, the firm also produces an RFID based, concealed, ceiling-mounted electronic article surveillance EAS device that reduces shrinkage, improves product availability and can also cover wide entrances, while also being capable of itemising inventory, taking count of multiple product types within a warehouse from a distance – without even having to unbox them. The device is particularly adept at solving common challenges for retailers, from monitoring stock levels to quantifying sales volumes, ideally wall-mounted between the stock room and sales floor.
What drives ETG’s scanning and detection products are technologies that resolve interference and employ various sensors to achieve highly accurate results.
“There are quite a lot of advantages in terms of accuracy,” says Fung, “as more traditional scanning technologies are often affected by conditions such as fogging or smoking, and cannot count very accurately in crowded situations because they only cover a single straight line of perspective. With our people count sensor, for example, we use a 3D solution with an accuracy rate of up to 95 per cent.”
The accuracy of ETG’s 3D imaging is bolstered by advanced features such as employee filtering as well as algorithms capable of identifying family groups and distinguishing between children and adults. This is ideal for retail environments where customer service involves staff moving in and out of stores, greeters welcoming customers, the presence of security guards and in luxury stores with lower traffic where every customer is significant.
The ETG whitepaper “Fundamentals of Retail Traffic Counting” provides an analysis of a range of metrics that help retailers understand insights into traffic counting, customer conversion and labour optimisation, emphasising the importance of measurement accuracy and how such traffic and conversion data can help effect changes across the retail decision-making process. The information helps retailers to improve customer return rates and increase their average spend per visit across their store networks.
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