Whether it's about the effectiveness of your website or your High Street prescence, leading digital companies are looking for more & more detailed data to improve their decision-making process. You'd expect most serious websites these days to be decked up the 9s with tools such as Hotjar & Google Analytics, all collecting reams of data about who's visiting & exactly how they use the site. In turn, this allows their websites to offer a more tailored and personal user experience.
But now these techniques are beginning to filter back into physical stores, with M&S being named as one of a handful of retailers that now track how customers use their shops; based on nothing more than your mobile phone trying to access wifi, your journey and customer experience can now be mapped.
To be honest, I'm surprised it's taken this long for retailers to apply the technology in this way, as it seems like an obvious step to take & I always assumed that they were already using CCTV to map our footfall around their stores.
Privacy issues aside, it's comforting to see validation of the techniques we apply regularly to the digital world for our clients.
Many high street retailers are secretly using customers phones to track their movements around their store. According to The Telegraph, retailers including Dune, Morrisons, Topshop and M&S are using technology which tracks the pings given out by smart phones when searching for wifi. Privacy campaigners have taken issue with this new technology stating shoppers are unaware they are being watched and are calling on stores to put up signs to inform them.