SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Green Hills, a one-store independent here is using its digital video surveillance system coupled with analytical software to measure the effectiveness of its signs, displays and promotions.
"With video analytics and metrics, we can not only measure the traffic flow in and out of our store, but also aisle conversion rates [the percentage of shoppers going down an aisle] and dwell time in front of certain categories, displays, brands, etc.," said Gary Hawkins, president, Center for Advancing Retail & Technology (CART), and chief executive officer of Green Hills, at the LEAD Marketing Conference earlier this month.
The technology, from BVI Networks, San Jose, Calif., also enables him to measure purchase conversion rates [the percentage going down an aisle and purchasing something] and break down customer activity by hour, day and week.
In one test of the video analytics at Green Hills, conducted with Nestle, Hawkins studied the effectiveness of two-foot-square off-shelf candy displays. He found that product exposure increased almost 500% and the number of shoppers engaged grew by more than 300%. In addition, dwell time was 30% longer at the displays than at category shelves.
In a test of the cereal aisle, Hawkins found that normally 20% of shoppers went down that aisle for an average of 23 seconds and 47% purchased a brand. One of the brand manufacturers created a "shelf showcase" calling attention to the brand and conveying information about the products. This caused aisle traffic to increase "more than any other promotion," and the number of shoppers engaged to rise more than 200%, he said.
On the other hand, dwell time decreased in the cereal test. "It's thought that by calling out where the cereals were, it helped shoppers be more efficient in the shopping process," he noted.