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Digitizing Shopping Behavior Using Video and Mobile Sensing

By Rajeev Sharma

Given the changing competitive landscape that is spilling over from the brick and mortar to
online channels, it is especially important for grocery retailers to develop capabilities for understanding
the in-store behavior of their shoppers. Technologies that anonymously track shoppers using video or mobile sensing can help in optimizing almost all aspects of store design, merchandising and marketing. In essence, these new technologies enable traditional grocery retailers to have the same level of understanding about their shoppers as online retailers such as Amazon.

One of the key advantages of “digitizing” the behavior of shoppers is that the retailers can define and track metrics related to the shopper experience. Thus, it allows the retailers to precisely measure the impact on shopping behavior for any innovation – whether it’s digital or traditional such as new store layout, aisle flow, displays, and so forth. Rapid testing allows the retailers to establish ROI and accurately predict the impact of any investment.

In-store behavior analytics also creates an opportunity for grocery retailers to partner with manufacturers to develop a shopper-centric category management process. This includes using category scorecards that augments purely financial measures with behavior metrics such as “traffic-to-buyer” conversion and category shoppability. Besides better category layouts and aisle flows, the new sensing enables better planning and execution of in-store displays and promotions taking into account the overall impact on store performance.

In summary, by including shopper-centered metrics from these new tracking technologies, retailers can have systematic basis to innovate and compete in the increasingly digital world.

Rajeev Sharma is Founder & CEO of VideoMining, an industry leader in in-store shopper marketing intelligence for CPG and Retail.
He is recognized as a pioneer in technology-enabled analysis of human behavior and a thought leader in marketing research. For more information: