Impinj Highlights Item Intelligence via RFID-Enabled Traffic Flow Heat Maps

April 8, 2014 Lea DeJarlais

Heat Map

Impinj’s booth at RFID Journal LIVE! 2014 will be outfitted with multiple xArray™ reader systems aggregated to generate one large 1,500 square foot read zone. The xArray reader systems report the location of each RFID Journal Live attendee’s UHF badge (a Zebra UHF card with a Monza 4QT tag chip) visiting the booth, and compiles the data into an activity/location heat map that builds over time. Heat maps are a visual representation of movement through a predetermined space. Areas of high traffic and interaction within a certain area are represented by reds and yellows on the heat map, while areas with less traffic are represented by blues and purples.

The unique xArray function of passive tag location and wide area reads provides many new opportunities for operational efficiency and business intelligence.  Businesses can use this information to understand the aggregated movement of items or people through a store or facility. One of the most innovative ways to visualize how customers and products flow through a space is by creating a heat map. This technology is particularly exciting in a retail setting.  Understanding how customers shop—specifically how they move through a retail space and interact with products—and designing the store layout based on this data can have a significant impact on in-store conversion rates. Some retailers use video footage to create heat maps of customer movements through the store, but this method doesn’t always show how customers are engaging with specific products.  Tagging products with UHF RFID embedded tags not only gives retailers inventory monitoring capabilities, but also enables better insight into how products are being interacted with. Some insights may include:

  • If a fixture or display is getting enough customer interactions
  • If a product with high interactions isn’t converting (suggesting the merchandise may be priced too high)
  • If products in a specific area of the store aren’t getting enough traffic and engagement
  • If certain products are being left in a fitting room more often than others (suggesting a fit issue)
  • What items are commonly tried on or purchased together
  • If rearranging product locations (placing popular items near less popular items for instance) helps drive conversion of either product

The Impinj xArray reader system will help businesses leapfrog to the next level of customer/client experiences; and the Impinj demos show some of the ways that retail, healthcare and entertainment venues will be enhanced in the future.

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