Which one is better? WiFi based retail analytics solutions versus camera-based retail analytics solutions.
In-store analytics is becoming a solid factor in retail businesses. Retailers constantly seek to understand their customers to optimize their marketing and sales strategies. Retailers can use valuable information about their customers for effective customer targeting when running advertisements, sales notifications, and special offers.
Why retail analytics?
Retailers who implement appropriate retail analytics solutions can reap wealth information about the purchasing trends and preferences of their shoppers providing key leads for managing store inventory, organizing staff, and reworking out operation hours to boost business success.
Some of the major solutions available for retailers seeking to collect viable information about their consumers and prospective buyers include Wifi based retail analytics and camera based retail analytics.
Wifi based retail analytics solutions
Wifi based retail analytics solutions involve using Wifi networks to gather customer data via Wifi enabled devices such as smartphones. The data can include the behavior, movement, and time spent at various in-store locations by customers. It can also capture the activities performed via the internet connection of the Wifi.
Benefits of Wifi based retail analytics
- A wifi based retail analytics solution can measure traffic passing outside a retail store and inside the store.
- It is easier to integrate data from Wifi based retail analytics into marketing, POS, and staffing.
- It is easy and quick to set up Wifi analytics in as little as less than 30 minutes.
- The customer experience metrics are rich compared to those from simple people counters.
- Wifi based analytics often come with a fully-supported cloud-based services.
- Wifi-based analytics can be installed on a retailer’s existing Wifi network.
Disadvantages of Wifi based retail analytics
- Privacy is the leading concerning in Wifi based retail analytics. Whereas information like device MAC address may not be a big issue, information like names and email addresses need confidential treatment. Retailers should make their customers understand how the business plans to use their information.
- Costs for Wifi based retail analytics may be higher for small retailers.
- If customers without Wifi enabled devices visit the store, the retailer might miss out on key metrics.
- Out of fear for identity theft, some store visitors with Wifi enabled devices disable the discoverability of their devices reducing the accuracy of data collected.
Camera based retail analytics
Camera based retail analytics involves the integration of analytics solutions into the cameras in a retail store to collect valuable customer data.
Benefits of Camera based retail analytics
- Facial recognition: Camera based retail analytics support facial recognition that provides the ability for real-time identification of individuals. It matches the individual’s identity versus the unique characteristics of the individuals available in public or private databases or against known identities of people.
- Heat maps: Camera based retail analytics provide information for heat mapping by measuring and rating image motion and motion concentration in an area of a retail store helping retailers to understand the flow of traffic.
- Camera based retail analytics are handy when collecting data about the entry or exit of people in a specific area of a retail store. It provides real-time data for retailers to measure traffic and take appropriate action in in-store marketing and sales targeting.
- It is easy for retailers to estimate occupancy at different locations in the retail stores with data from camera based analytics at different times of the day. Such information is useful in determining business hours, planning staff, and determining issues like lighting in the store.
- Determining intruders is easy with the help of camera based analytics. They make it possible to cross-check captured data with public databases of criminals to keep the store safe from criminals by taking necessary security actions.
Disadvantages of Camera based retail analytics
- Not all cameras can support retail analytics. Implementing camera based retail analytics is a challenge for retailers using analog cameras.
- The price of IP cameras suitable for higher accuracy retail analytics is high for some retail businesses. Retailers might, therefore, resort to cheaper but inappropriate cameras.
Retailers should weigh out the kind of data they need, budget allocation, size of their stores, and the customer segments on target. These are some of the basic guidelines when choosing between Wifi enabled retail analytics and camera enabled retail analytics solutions.