Assessing UK fashion retailer’s store portfolio based on analytics data

Jarno Marin

A UK-based retail store

The background story

A UK-based fashion retail chain contacted us to get help in optimising their store estate after hearing about the new metrics and potentiality Walkbase can provide. As it was not the first request of that kind, we decided to give you an insight into the methods and techniques we use for solving problems like this.

The retail chain had pressures to improve the performance of the overall estate with the possibility to trim it. As a forward-thinking company, they initially wanted to understand the current situation followed by the possibilities to improve the existing setup.

Understanding how their stores were currently performing and whether there were any potential new angles (KPIs) for assessing store performance in a unified way, were one of the key priorities for the retailer. The fact that stores are strongly affected by their surroundings (or “context”) had been a particular problem in assessing performance fairly across the stores, especially in terms of their attractiveness.

The actions that help retailers 

To help the retailer answer these questions, Walkbase solution was installed in multiple stores. The stores were selected in such a way that there were different surroundings and the level of assumed potential, but also so that for each of these contexts, there were multiple stores that could be benchmarked.
 
With proper calibrations, our WiFi sensors were able to distinguish both store visits as well as the outside potential, i.e. the amount of people walking in front of a store within any given timeframe. The ability of Walkbase to assess outside potential and conversion to store visits from that (i.e. “Capture rate”), gave the retailer a valuable new insight into the store performance.

Other key capabilities provided to the retailer included footfall, dwell time and conversion metrics in separate areas within the store (including fitting rooms and tills), number of unique visitors and visit frequency trends. 

The methods we used and the results we got

For assessing the performance of different stores, we gathered data over three months. The customer worked closely with us to look at multiple different aspects and assessed the success of the stores. One of the main findings was the comparison of the outside potential and the capture rate between several stores. 

By grouping the stores based on the different context and looking at the outside potential and capture rate, high and low potential and performance could be identified as seen in the figures 1 and 2.

Outside potential and capture rate of the store.

Grouping stores based on the context allowed us to see the high and low performance stores in both outside potential and capture rate (highlighted with Green and Red). As we can see, the stores 1 and 4 had high outside potential compared to the other stores in similar context, while stores 3 and 12 had low outside potential.
 
Furthermore, when we look across multiple stores, we can see the trend in how the capture rate correlates with the outside potential and further identify the low and high performing stores (see figure 2). The store 3, 4 and 6 had lower capture rate than can be expected, while store 9 was an example of a store where the capture rate was clearly higher than expected.

Capture rate correlates with the outside potential

These insights gave the fashion retailer a fresh look into the stores’ performance and a way to identify the best practices and improvements points on the store attractiveness.

What’s the current situation and the benefits? 

With the new methods provided by Walkbase, the fashion retailer was able to assess the overall potential and the current performance of their stores in different settings. They have also started to utilise the best practices from the well performing stores, which are already partially adapted across their estate.
 
The retailer has continued to gather up store data and is currently in the process of planning the systematic improvements in the selected stores. They are also considering to change the location of some stores to more favourable ones and are investigating the financial side of the potential move. The retailer estimates that the improvements they have started implementing based on this assessment alone are already bringing significant benefits to the overall business.

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Read more about the immediate changes that could be made based on data from our previous blog post here.

 

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Walkbase provides a retail analytics solution for improving the impact of marketing on physical stores and personalising in-store shopping experience.

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