Samsung and Walkbase unveil new in-store ad proposition

Walkbase is combining its advertising technology with Samsung's in-store digital signage to provide retailers with a new way to run marketing campaigns in their shops.

The platform anonymously analyses customer behaviour through Wi-Fi signals from customers' smartphones, generating insights such as the paths customers take when in a store, the products they look at and dwell time – together forming the basis of behaviour-based shopper profiles.

Data created can then be used by retailers to sell digital signage advertising to brands, while on-going analytics can be fed into marketing and content management systems, allowing the campaign to be constantly updated by the retailer.

Adrian James, UK managing director at Walkbase, commented: "Our technology exists to enable retailers to understand their shoppers' behaviour far better when they enter a store.

"With Wi-Fi analytics, we can accurately measure ad impressions, such as how many people see an ad at any given time, and what were the subsequent behavioural patterns within the entire store."

He added: "This means we can give retailers more granular data than ever before, helping them to understand how the in-store experience impacts conversion and to tailor advertising accordingly – creating the ultimate personal experience for the customer."

Finland-headquartered Walkbase's link-up with Samsung was revealed on Tuesday at an event at the Finnish Ambassador's Residence in west London, where Essential Retail joined representatives from retailers, banks and brands to hear about the new solution.

The event also saw Topshop's regional controller, Alex Hanson, reveal how Walkbase's technology has been used by the Arcadia brand to make key operating decision in its flagship Oxford Circus store in London.

Hanson said he was keen he "didn't want to turn our team into data miners", so the company used the analytics provided by Walkbase to create a business case for change. One consequent move was to amend the opening hours of the shop.

"For the first hour of the day we did have sales, but the data showed that the conversion rate was very low. So we changed the opening hours to more effective times," he noted.

Hanson suggested the new augmented advertising offering has the potential to work well in a department store setting, arguing it could be a useful tool for cosmetics brands looking to market their new ranges inside retailers such as Debenhams, his former employer.

Walkbase and Samsung view their new proposition as a way for retailers to drive revenue from their costly store portfolios, and they are targeting supermarkets and shopping centres, in particular. The companies say they are already in discussions with several major retail and food brands that are keen to implement the technology.

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