How can retailers make the most of Wi-Fi analytics?

These days, every smartphone is equipped with a Wi-Fi connection. Retail stores often use technology to detect the device’s unique ID number and track it through the shop.

This technology is used to determine the flow of customer traffic, analyse conversion rates and research dwell times. Retailers can then reconfigure layouts and displays to better attract and retain shoppers, boosting sales and customer loyalty.

So how exactly can retailers use Wi-Fi analytics to boost revenue?

Steve Mulhearn, head of enhanced technologies UK and Ireland at cybersecurity provider Fortinet, says: “The data can be combined with location-based advertising to convince shoppers to spend more time in-store. Retailers can profile customers and target them with tailored adverts people are used to seeing online. This can give brands the ‘personal touch’.”

Mulhearn also suggests that retailers can use previously collected data to redesign their store layouts by tracking customer movements to see which areas are getting more or less footfall.

For retailers with a large store network, Wi-Fi analytics can enable them to identify exactly why certain stores perform better than others.

Mulhearn explains: “Is your best-performing site generating more sales because it receives higher traffic or because of the way it displays merchandise?

“Technology can pinpoint the root cause behind sales variations across sites, allowing retailers to modify appropriately.”

Using this data, retailers can carry out testing to determine how they can attract shoppers to explore a large amount of their big-box stores or stay in the outlet for a longer period of time by offering incentives or special discounts.