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How the Retail Industry is using Video Analytics to Extract Data from CCTV Streams?

video analytics software

Video analytics is a powerful tool that is capable of analyzing video to determine various objects and events and when this video analytics is blended with AI it can change the way of business in the retrial industry that too without increasing the store’s capital expenditure, the management can get hold of essential analytics and insights about visitors and customers all by using the existing CCTVs.

The Lesser-Known yet Crucial Problem

The retail industry, as we all know, relies a lot on good customer service and smart marketing campaigns. The brick-and-mortar stores work just fine in analyzing manually the requirements of their prospective customers, their purchasing habits, and their reaction to the marketing campaigns. Although, these data points are prone to be biased as per the different store supervisors or auditors. There is no ‘third eye’ available for the top management which can assist in making proactive decisions in real-time and collate all the necessary customer analytics centrally on a dashboard easily accessible and comprehensible by the management.

Furthermore, one of the major reasons why e-commerce websites are winning the retail race is because of their ability to track the daily customer inflows, dwell time, and purchase choices through an automated system. They know exactly what to offer to their customers the next time they open their virtual store. Therefore, some key customer analytics which is crucial in making important decisions for marketing, operations, inventory control, etc. are not available with the offline stores.

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How can AI assist?

This is exactly where the ‘dumb’ CCTV cameras that hardly do anything but record the events come into play. Like a child learns to count from 1 to 10 and then to 100, Artificial Intelligence also enables devices like CCTV cameras to learn and smartly identify the events taking place and collate them for future reference. As a result, with Video Analytics, your CCTV cameras aren’t ‘dumb’ anymore.

AI Accurately Identifies Different People for Footfall Analysis

Now, the enablement of such technology has multiple outcomes for a retail outlet. It provides crucial data points, as and when required by the personnel from marketing, operations, safety, security, and also inventory control departments and therefore enables them to make smarter data-driven decisions which ultimately affect the customer experience and store performance for the better.

Some of the many AI-based features that can be enabled through CCTV cameras are:

  1. Footfall Analysis and Occupancy Check: Retail outlets and restaurants/cafes can have a track of the number of visitors on an hourly or daily basis. This can assist the management in analyzing the inventory requirements of a store along with its performance and customers’ reaction to marketing campaigns. Along with the calculation of daily walk-ins, the management of the store also has easy access to the real-time occupancy of the store and customer dwell time as well by using Video Analytics on their existing CCTV cameras.

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Effects and Benefits?

Automating your CCTV cameras with AI in a retail space can go a long way. You can achieve both, Direct and Indirect ROIs by utilizing your cameras as a 3rd eye. From the reduction of manual auditing to better staff accountability and highly optimized marketing campaigns to target customer-centric offerings, this virtual workforce enabled by Video Analytics offers a plethora of benefits and breakthroughs for the organization.

Utility for Marketing Department:

Key Customer Analytics such as Footfall, Demography, Dwell Time, Heatmap, etc. derived from CCTV cameras enabled with Video Analytics can very well assist the Marketing department to optimize their campaigns in the most effective and streamlined manner. JARVIS, on its Gender Analytics dashboard, gives an overview of the gender count coming in at each store. Therefore, such an insight can be of significant use for the marketing department to align their campaigns in a way that caters to their most loyal customer segment.

Insightful Dashboards for Empirical Analysis and Reporting

Similarly, the performance of any marketing campaign such as any banners, posters, or any type of visual merchandise can be better assessed by such analytics. An increase in the daily customer footfall, in such as case, shall denote good performance of the campaign/visual merchandise.

How can the Daily Operations benefit?

The day-to-day operations of each store can be optimized and streamlined to ensure the best possible use of the resources available. For instance, the daily flow of customers shall help deduce the requirements of staff at a particular store/location for a given period of time. On the same lines, the performance of the same staff can be tracked by checking their availability at the counters, near trial rooms, around the aisle, etc. Staff performance in terms of their attendance and dress code can also be tracked using the same CCTV cameras with Video Analytics.

Identify the ‘Hottest’ Place Within the Store with Customer Heatmap

Safety and Security Department’s take:

Similarly, there are different AI offerings in Video Analytics that can assist the Safety and Security departments as well in their processes of Auditing and maintaining a safe and secure environment for their customers and employees. Tracking any hostile customer, fire, theft, etc. in real-time can effectively help the management potentially save a lot of money. Nowadays, CCTV cameras are installed equipped with inbuilt microphones, which can also be used to track any suspicious audio within the stores. AI modules are trained to actively notify the security about any sounds such as a person shouting, gunshot, etc.

Thinking about RoI?

There has hardly been an easy way to justify any investment in digitalization during this era of technological transformation. Digitalization either improves the bottom line for the companies in a direct manner or in an indirect manner.

When it comes to the use of Artificial Intelligence-based Video Analytics, any organization can avail of both types of benefits. A direct reduction in manual monitoring and auditing costs has been noticed at many stores and outlets with the use of Video Analytics on the existing CCTV cameras. Whereas, it is really more about the indirect benefits that a store/outlet can avail from such a technology. Potentially, huge sums of money can be saved yearly by ensuring proper adherence to all safety and security measures, and there are exponential benefits that a retail outlet can derive by streamlining their marketing campaigns and their staff performance by utilizing the crucial data derived from the CCTV camera feeds.