In this age of automation, I still find it surprising to see people with a manual tally counter or a piece of paper, trying to capture the number of people entering and leaving a premises. I have been exposed to automated counting for over 12 years now, but I do remember how surprised I was when I interviewed at SMS, to see that devices to count actual people existed not web visitors (which I understood quite well).
Intelligent People Counting Cameras As you may have noticed up to now, the technologies we have been going through are reused from their original purpose and were adapted to count people. They all have their limitations. That is what caused smart cameras to appear on the market. Their goal is to count with increased accuracy in different kinds of scenarios. “Back in the days”, which means just a few years ago, these were connected to a collector box such as our STC.
Buying a people counter is often considered a long term investment. It is now widely accepted that an accurate and reliable traffic count is a key metric in the world of retail and shopping centers. Most large retailers have at least one technology installed, and if you ask them, most would tell you they cannot run their business without it.
One question retailers ask when considering a traffic counting system is whether to install directional or non-directional detectors. Determining which is most appropriate depends on the value of the information, the cost of getting it, and the ROI potential. If directional counts are mission critical and provide action-able data, then this technology is appropriate.
Advertising Impact CAN Be Measured Two stories: Sporting Goods A small western sporting goods chain saved over $400,000 in advertising expenses the first year they installed traffic counters by measuring the impact of print advertising on their traffic and comparing it with their sales. They found that a campaign initially drew additional heavy traffic (and sales); then the traffic increase fell off while the increased sales continued.
Most retailers that install a traffic counting system take a “toe in the water” approach to using the data. Increasing conversion rate by 1% annual in many chains provides a very satisfactory ROI. This type of result can usually be achieved simply through awareness, better staffing during busy periods and days, and by better accountability.
At Storetraffic, we believe in creating smart, right-size business solutions for all retailers. That’s why our tech is both user- and budget-friendly. We pioneered people counting solutions decades ago—47 years to be exact—and we’ve been connected to North American retailers ever since.