Retail Surveillance Strategies: 5 Emerging Trends You Need to Know

retail video surveillance

In today’s day and age, businesses collect and store an unprecedented amount of data, and it is more accessible (and valuable) than ever before. Every day people are finding new ways to utilize data, and video analytics are opening new doors. Video analytics offer a unique opportunity to leverage data captured by a business’ security surveillance network, and executives can analyze it effectively and reap the benefits across the entire company.

As we’ve highlighted in the past on this blog, a retail location can greatly benefit from integrating video surveillance with other systems, such as access control. In fact, many retail locations are beginning to streamline response and decision-making capabilities by doing exactly this. Analytics can provide real, measurable value in the area of business intelligence. By applying smart video to big data, retailers and other businesses can realize a variety of operational benefits.

The situations that call for video content analysis are growing by the day. As video surveillance technology continues to advance, innovations are unveiling a range of new features and functionalities that provide increasingly relevant data to vertical markets and customer applications beyond traditional video surveillance.

While surveillance cameras were once reserved for security specifications only, they can now provide business intelligence information that improves operational efficiency. Video data can provide retail locations with customer demographic insights that inform marketing strategies and ultimately improve business profitability. We have highlighted five emerging trends in the video analytics realm below.

Traffic Patterns

Retail business owners can use their video surveillance footage to analyze how customers move throughout the store – where they head to most often, where they stop, what they look at. They can review footage to determine which areas are causing “pinch points” that create inefficient shopping atmospheres and result in foot traffic congestion.

Checkout Line Management

When checkout lines or queues become long, store management can be automatically alerted to add staff at the cash register. This feature can be especially valuable to larger convenience stores that tend to experience customers in waves.

Information Extraction

With new, field-tested image processing technology and networked cameras, intelligent video analytics have made substantial progress in extracting more information and value from the field of view. With the higher quality cameras, retail owners can now easily approximate the age, gender, moving direction and loitering time of every customer. Which leads us to our next point.

Loitering Detection

Loitering detection sends alerts when there are people who are idling in the camera’s view. A camera can detect human-sized moving objects in a predetermined no loitering zone. If the individuals end up loitering for a specific period of time, the camera can send an alarm to the operator. This is a huge benefit as it eliminates the need to spend man hours checking for loiterers.

Direction Detection

Direction detection detects people, cars or moving objects that go the wrong way down an aisle or street. When an object is moving in an unauthorized or unusual direction, the camera sends an alarm to the operators and highlights the object the camera is tracking.


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