Adopting E-Commerce Analytics for Physical Retail Stores

One significant advantage that e-commerce websites have over brick-and-mortar retail stores is access to customer data. Every decision that online stores make and every strategy they implement is data-driven. From marketing/promotions to inventory management and customer service delivery, analytics are continually leveraged to ensure optimization.

As a result, online retailers can track performance in all facets of their operation and make improvements as needed. This makes them better placed to attract more prospects, convert more visitors, and retain a good percentage of their customers. Subsequently, this translates to more sales, higher revenues, and better business performance.

In the past, physical stores did not have the tools to leverage data at a similar level. But this is no longer the case. With retail analytics software from V-Count, brick-and-mortar retailers can now adopt the same analytics as e-commerce websites. They can evaluate visitors’ in-store behavior and pinpoint prevalent trends.  Retailers may also identify their customers’ favorite products and track every step of the buying process.

If you manage a physical retail store, these are the major e-commerce-style analytics you must adopt to streamline operations and improve sales:

  1. Overall store traffic
    This is a measure of how many visitors pass through a retail location. Every other metric in retail depends on foot traffic statistics, and a store must attract a steadily increasing stream of prospects. Our People Counting software provides an accurate measure of store traffic and other footfall analytics. You can estimate how many visitors you receive daily/monthly/yearly, identify your peak periods, and track how store traffic changes over time.This information can be used to improve product procurement, determine staffing needs, and evaluate the effectiveness of marketing campaigns. If your store is part of a retail chain, you can compare traffic data and benchmark performance with stores in other locations.
  2. Bounce/walk-in rate
    For an online store, the bounce rate is the percentage of visitors that navigate away from the website after viewing just one page. At brick-and-mortar retail locations, it describes the percentage of customers that walk into a store versus those that walked past.Analytics from the V-Count’s People Counting solution can be used to measure the bounce rate and track how it changes with time. By implementing strategies to increase your store’s walk-in rate, you can increase traffic and sales.
  3. Conversion rate
    After store traffic, the conversion rate is the most critical metric in retail. It is the percentage of visitors that made purchases versus those that leave a store empty-handed. The average conversion rate at physical stores is 25%. This means that only 1 in 4 store visitors end up buying something.Since conversion is directly connected to sales, if you can increase the figure even slightly, you can guarantee more sales and higher revenues. However, you can’t improve a metric if you have no means of measuring it. Our industry-leading Business Intelligence Platform provides retailers with regular reports on their conversion rate. The software also comes with a dashboard that tracks and reports important retail analytics in real-time.
  4. Occupancy rate per store section
    There are many benefits to identifying your store’s busiest sections. Firstly, these areas hold the most potential for sales, and plans must be put in place to maximize the extra footfall. For example, you may deploy more staff to busy sections to boost customer satisfaction and, consequently, conversion rate. Secondly, sections with high visitor activity are the best places to build engagement for new products and publicize promotional offers.V-Count’s Heatmap solution allows physical stores to pinpoint the occupancy rate of each section. Analytics from the software also offers insight into how customers move around a store and which products they interact with the most.
  5. Cart abandonment rate
    This is the percentage of customers that terminate their buying journey just before checkout. An online store may reduce cart abandonment by offering free shipping or discounts. At brick-and-mortar retail outlets, however, the significant reasons customers abandon their shopping are poor customer service and long checkout queues.With analytics from our Queue Management system, retailers can discover the customer-to-staff ratio in their stores and work on improving the quality of service delivery. The analytics also provide insight into the store’s average checkout time. If they have to wait longer than five minutes before paying, 1 in 3 customers will abandon their shopping.

Adopting these analytics is only the first step. After the data shows where performance is lagging, the next course of action is to devise strategies to make things better. For example, if the bounce rate is too high, you can work toward improving your store’s signage and window displays. You may also offer discounts to get more visitors in the door. Similarly, the cart abandonment rate can be reduced by setting up extra checkout stalls or deploying more staff during peak periods.Retail analytics solutions give physical stores the means to collect data points that would otherwise be unattainable. Previously, these analytics gave online stores a competitive edge over their brick-and-mortar counterparts. With V-Count, however, you can now adopt digital solutions for your retail outlet and level the playing field.