With the pandemic changing the way we do business, occupancy tracking—counting the number of in-location customers at a given time to meet capacity requirements—has become a daily practice for many retailers. Manual counting is a hassle, as staff struggle with keeping track of customers moving in and out of their location. And what if you don’t want to use your best staff members as doorpersons rather than customer service agents?
Raydiant’s latest partnership with retail analytics platform provider RetailNext meets these changing needs of today’s retailers. This latest app integration automates the occupancy tracking process, displaying current occupancy levels on Raydiant-enabled screens. Let’s look at how this will save you and your staff time, while offering your customers a more positive in-location experience.
The Problem with Manual Counting
Maybe you have one or two staff members at your doors counting customers as they arrive and leave. There are a few problems with this manual counting method:
- It’s costly: you’re paying full time for someone to watch your door
- It wastes personnel: you could be using them for higher-level duties
- It’s less effective: human error makes countless accurate
The Solution: Automated, Real-Time Occupancy Tracking
Now part of Raydiant’s expanding app library, RetailNext is a retail analytics platform that automates occupancy tracking in real-time. Raydiant customers can simply log into their Raydiant dashboard, add the app, and set it to start tracking! The system can be set to display your current occupancy on one or more Raydiant-enabled screens in-house, informing you when you’re below, near, or at capacity. Since the tracking is live and updates in a matter of seconds, the on-screen data is always accurate.
The RetailNext system works by pulling data using a series of sources—including sensors, video cameras, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth devices, and POS systems—to gauge the occupancy level at any given time. By automating this process:
- It ensures that your store is meeting COVID capacity limits
- It provides a safer, more socially distanced environment for customers and staff
- It frees up staff to help customers (instead of manning the entrance)
- It cues customers with on-screen messaging: “Please come in!” (under capacity), “Almost Full” (near capacity), or “Please do not enter” (at or above capacity)
- It alerts staff when to prepare for higher traffic, open more registers, schedule breaks, etc.
Keep Customers and Staff Safe While Meeting Capacity Limits
A crowded store is one where it’s difficult to practice social distancing. By ensuring that your location is meeting COVID capacity limits, you’re showing your customers and team members that you care about their safety. And with many shoppers still hesitant about in-store shopping during the pandemic, putting their mind at ease by providing a safe shopping environment is crucial to gaining their trust and repeat business.
In a recent study by Deloitte, a mere 23% of customers ranked the retail industry as trustworthy when it comes to caring for public safety. This statistic was an indication that more retailers should focus on building customer trust by consistently implementing COVID protocols like limiting store capacity, providing ample space for social distancing, and regularly disinfecting common surfaces. The Raydiant platform offers many ways to maintain public health protocols, from tracking occupancy levels to offering contactless ways to serve customers to posting public health reminders on highly visible screens.
Engage Customers with Live Occupancy Displays
A little transparency goes a long way when it comes to your customers. RetailNext’s automated capacity tracker offers this transparency through Raydiant screens at your entrances, letting customers know when to enter and when to wait until the store is under capacity again. Not only does this real-time data sharing keep customers in the loop, it gives them clear, at-a-glance instructions that make their shopping experience more convenient. It also gives them a sense of security as they shop, knowing that you’re doing everything you can to keep them safe during their visit.
Staff Smarter with Automated Occupancy Counting
RetailNext solves two problems for staffing. First, it automates the counting process so your employees can focus on customer service and other, more important, tasks. And second, the occupancy data you collect can help you plan around high- and low-volume times and days. In the long-term, it means scheduling staffing ahead of time to meet the needs of days with historically lower and higher occupancy. In the short-term, it lets you decide when to complete tasks like counting inventory, restocking, and cleaning—all of which can be done when the store is at a lower capacity level. On the flip side, you can prepare personnel when approaching higher-volume levels, shifting more employees to registers and setting up self-service kiosks to meet the demand.
Remotely Access Occupancy Data from Any Device
Managing a business and all its moving parts takes the right tools. As a business owner or manager, you can only be in one place at a time—which is why it’s important for you to access in-store data from anywhere. Raydiant’s platform is managed in a secure cloud, which is accessible via any device with internet. So whether you’re working in the back office, at your dining room table, or on the beach, you still get full transparency when it comes to your store’s current occupancy levels. You also get access to all Raydiant apps and screens, and can create, schedule, upload, and update your in-house screens from any location.
More Tools for Retailers
At Raydiant, we’re always looking for ways to expand and enhance our products to meet the needs of today’s brick and mortars. For example, Kiosk is our answer to interactive, self-service kiosks for contactless service. This out-of-the-box solution has everything you need to offer a more engaging, self-directed way for your customers to engage with, browse, and buy from your brand in a contactless environment.
Virtual Agent is another all-in-one solution that allows retailers a way to provide personalized, in-store customer service from anywhere. No matter where your experts are—at headquarters or in another location—you can use their expertise to provide face-to-face, expert advice and customer care to customers in any of your locations.
To learn more about these and other Raydiant offerings, book a free demo today.