How retailers can use video analytics to improve in-store experiences and efficiency

Author: Sean Taylor, Head of Retail Solutions, Panasonic System Communications Europe

 

Video analytics are often used by retailers to pre-empt and resolve security issues. Theft, store flow, placement of goods. At the Retail Risk conference today I will be talking about the missed opportunities there are to take data from networked video cameras to achieve in-store efficiencies and improve the customer experience.

When thinking about the retail store of the future, Deloitte forecasts that in-store retail technologies will look and feel completely different to what we have in place today. Rather than simple interactive displays, iPads and adaptive displays that so many people think of when they consider a ‘Connected Store’, the key will be integration of meaningful data feeds and analytics to generate a rich picture of consumer behaviours and preferences.

 

At Panasonic, we are working with retailers across Europe to bring these impactful in-store technologies to reality. Video analytics in particular can play a vital role across three key areas of the Connected Store:

 

1.      Reimagining the store - creating an omnichannel experience for customers so that any changes to the customer experience online are immediately reflected in-store. For example, when looking at product availability, electronic shelf labels using NFC technology can link to video on the shelves for out of stock detection. This detection can then be combined with information or offers to the individual’s phone that allow them to immediately purchase the product elsewhere (online or at another store nearby)

2.      Experimenting with experience – let’s take store dwell time and optimisation for example. Video technology can be combined with facial recognition and shelf information to generate demographic-based data points for improved product targeting. Without the video element, footfall in-store remains largely anonymised and therefore more personalised targeting is difficult. By layering on the video analytics capabilities, retailers are able to offer much more meaningful in-store experiences.

3.      Transforming the business through the creation of a deep learning environment that can build rich data pictures to inform all departments within the retail business. This area of progress is especially pertinent today given the driving forces that traditionally pure-play or digitally native retailers are imposing on the in-store retail market. Electronics retailers are a really good example of this, very few are left standing on the high street having been hit by online retailers such as Amazon. It was difficult enough when these retailers were competing with you online, but now that Amazon is entering the physical store environment too, retailers must have a counter-measure. The ability to dynamically change pricing, product information and promotions to compete across channels is now imperative. Video analytics provide visibility into how these changes impact in-store events and behaviours.

 

These three core areas of retail performance are just some of the ways in which video analytics can have a tangible impact on the bottom line for retailers. It just shows how the video technology traditionally used for retail risk management can now be applied across functions and used to achieve many retail business goals – boosting sales, optimising store operations and ensuring security and loss prevention.

If you are interested in hearing more about my presentation at the Retail Risk conference about video analytics, the role it plays in the store of the future or about our installations and use cases with retailers from small shops to international retail chains, please get in touch.

For further information on the solutions that support these in-store innovations, visit: https://business.panasonic.co.uk/solutions/retail

 

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