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How stores track your shopping behavior | Ray Burke | TEDxIndianapolis

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This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences. Why are companies so intent on using technology to track our behavior? Our actions reveal what we desire, how we shop, and why we buy. Retailers can now learn so much more about shopper behavior than ever before, and while these “big data” applications create concerns about privacy, the detailed data can be used to design stores, product offerings and promotions that connect with our interests, speed up the shopping process, and help us find items we will buy. These new tools are critical to improving store efficiency and shoppability; and offer a vision of the future of retailing. Raymond R. Burke (Bloomington, IN USA) is the E.W. Kelley Professor of Business Administration at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business, and founding director of the School’s Customer Interface Laboratory, a state-of-the-art facility for investigating how customers interact with new retail environments and technologies. His research focuses on understanding the influence of point-of-purchase factors–including new products, product packaging, pricing, promotions, assortments, and displays–on consumer shopping behavior. Dr. Burke has served on the faculties of the Harvard Business School and the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. His articles have appeared in several major journals, including the Harvard Business Review, the Journal of Consumer Research, the Journal of Marketing, and Marketing Science. About TEDx, x = independently organized event In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)
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Text Comments (64)
Stores should have visible signs at the entrance that tell customers about how the store uses this sort of tracking technology + how long they keep the data + companies they share the data with + or sell the data to + and for what purposes the data will be used? That way the public can choose for themselves. We want TRANSPARANCY and the ability to make our own descisions about if we want to go to a store that tracks customers or a store that does not! This tech is not helping consumers, its just another way for companies to manipulate us and make us spend more.
Darrell Tan (2 months ago)
As a shopper, as long as it helps me to have a better shopping experience. As a retail business owner, this info is priceless. Some simple approach that able to increase sales revenue without investing too much money.
random stuff (2 months ago)
There are times where such research can be mutually beneficial, but keep in mind that shoppers' goals are different from the business' goals. The business wants your money. The shopper wants to get a good deal on the items they need/want. I've seen plenty of instances where this research on consumers, shopper behavior, etc is used against the shoppers, not for their benefit, but just to increase profits. One example is the eye tracking he talks about. It can be used to make it easier for you to find what you want, but what do most stores do? They put the higher profit items in those areas and hide the better deals on higher or lower shelves (heck, sometimes you can't even get to the better deals because the big display in front of the shelves is blocking access).
Magnar The Magnificent (3 months ago)
The solution :-)
David Bow Wow (3 months ago)
Jacquelyn Wolanski (3 months ago)
Big brother is watching and this will be used against us. They trying to make it innocent. I don't agree with it. I think we need to stop this before it becomes the norm.
gunsofaugust1971 (5 months ago)
America is a consumer plantation.
gunsofaugust1971 (5 months ago)
Know your enemy.
Mike Nonya (6 months ago)
High tech professional stalking...can you see the future?
This is brilliant!
a64750 (6 months ago)
How Bank Credit Cards track shopping behavior - for decades
Steve Fritzenkotter (6 months ago)
I am amazed that some folks on this thread are surprised there is psychology and behavioral research being used by retailers!
36254518 36254518 (7 months ago)
great presentation i love it.
Ghost Murmur (7 months ago)
I'm going to start wearing masks in public
random stuff (2 months ago)
That will be entertaining when you go to the bank =)
Bonnie Hundley (8 months ago)
Retail spies and consumer lab rats. Data is gold now. Once you're aware of sales tactics, nothing is lost on your eyes ever again.
Mr.creator 12386 (8 months ago)
China is too futuristic now
Isidoro Perez (9 months ago)
Please don´t forget that new iphones and androids are emitting random MAC addresses when they are not connected to the Wifi, so wifi tracking using WifiAccessPoints (Cisco, ArubaNetworks, any other vendors) will produce incoherent and "dummy" results (most retailers have been tested and avoid). Just one phone is detected as 20 or more phones during the visit to the venue. The bad news is that you cannot reuse wifi infrastructure to analyze instore behaviour of customers. The good news is that there is another technology called Seeketing Nodes plug&play devices that are capable to deal with these issues, because they are not based in Wifi APs, using instead pure signal detection and fingerprinting techniques.
internet trash (9 months ago)
If I buy a Eminem CD will they give me free tickets? Btw I dont want my privacy invaded
Dreyar卍卐House (9 months ago)
Watching this for a snow day, kys
Dennis Mitchell (10 months ago)
All I know is mind control, mind control is all I know.
Tiago Kaphan (10 months ago)
this is what's life supposed to be ? it's harming people ..
Aphiwe Mambi (1 year ago)
Other words, There is no privacy, YOU ARE SPYING ON EVERYBODY
Glexir 2 (1 year ago)
nice video man woman
W33D BL0K3 (1 year ago)
dette suger
Lambert Brother (1 year ago)
Wish H&M would take this advice. All the stuff I want to try/buy is on a high shelf. Yes, I'm in a wheelchair, so I'm shorter than most people, but it's also too high for most of my taller friends, who range between 5'8" and 6'3".
random stuff (2 months ago)
I run across the same issue. I'm 5'3" and can't reach stuff on the top shelf at the grocery store. However, 75% of the stuff I buy on a weekly basis they moved to the top shelves. Since I live in a small town and there are only 2 grocery stores, I don't exactly have a ton if choice in where to shop. What I've ended up doing is buying more of my groceries online. That did get the store's attention, when they saw I was spending much less per week. It didn't inspire them to fix the problem though, just inspired them to clutter my email with coupons for stuff I don't buy until I unsubscribed.
Innsmouth Dweller (7 months ago)
This is pure statistics. If placing stuff on high shelf means 30% decrease in sales, they won't do it. I hate this scientification of marketing, because of it I can't find corduroy pants and white grapefruit juice anywhere anymore.
Michael Simpson (1 year ago)
America must protect the Village and protect our citizens..., we must be willing to shed our privacy in the public sphere in an effort to provide proper surveillance by Law Enforcement.
random stuff (2 months ago)
Privacy and security are in a constant struggle. How much privacy should citizens be expected to give up in the name of security? As I recall, the ironically named "Patriot Act" gave the government much broader legal ability to spy on and detain citizens. That said, the focus of this video was more toward how stores are studying customers and using that data to increase profits, with the speaker pitching this as mutually beneficial. I can imagine that with such vast troves of data available, the goverment is probably searching for ways to get their hands on it, all in the name of keeping us safe, of course.
whatever (1 year ago)
Destroyed ALL of my grocery store customer loyalty cards. F.U. Creepy big data!
old old (1 year ago)
Big brother of a different scale
Photohack Lovers (1 year ago)
this is a privacy concern and i feel violated. I am in online marketing and i sell graphic design resources but i dont email or track them or bother them because i hate it. We hate it.
TheMilenkata (7 months ago)
And after a while you will bankrupt. Every digital marketing specialist should track the customers and how they behave on their store. That's why every website has cookies.
Chris Stevenson (1 year ago)
Here is my problem with it. Companies need to disclose to their customers what they are doing so the customer is aware. If they are doing it behind the scenes and customers are found out, it puts the company in a bad light.
random stuff (2 months ago)
When its for mutual benefit, then yes, it can be a good thing and can be positioned as research done to improve your shopping experience. The problem is that businesses have abused trust, especially the bigger ones. Much of their research and tracking customers is done with pure profit motive and any benefit to the customer can feel more like a happy accident than like it was the businesse's goal. Some stores do benefit from making it easier to find what you want and for them, this research is mutually beneficial. Other stores feel there's more profit to be had making it hard to find what you want and forcing you to traipse through the whole place to find it, while strategically placed higher profit items are easy to find...clearly they hope you load up on impulse buys during your search. It may work for some, but if I can't find what I'm looking for, I just leave and buy it online.
Ian Moone (8 months ago)
If you owned a brick and mortar retail store, wouldn't you try to find the best way to arrange your goods that maximizes revenue and reduces the amount of time shoppers are in the store? If you can move the items that people always look for to the front of the store everyone wins- the people get what they need without having to walk all over the store. You make them happier-- and they come back. This is how stores are able to do that.
Kurt Cooper (1 year ago)
hmm. why do I feel more like my privacy is being interrupted verses the retailer helping me?
Cheryl Jeffali (1 year ago)
How will we know info from these algorithms wont be shared other than "we will lose trust in the store or brand? " Are you kidding me? Do stores actually care about individuals, or do they go off volume? Yes thats right, they go off volume. And if they are all sharing their information with each other then who do you hold accountable? Because were not talking about mom and pop useing this are we? No, were talking about stores like Wal-Mart. Its all quite anonymous on their part but not so anonymous on yours. So, the information wont be shared, You mean the way face book and other social media says it won't share information? Beware this and tell them no! We will not be tracked. If you suck at selling things then you need to pay and actual person to fix your problem!
issyysddshyufnhjfjk (1 year ago)
bullshit you want more money you con
Spike (1 year ago)
Mind blowing statistics @12:29
Mickey G (1 year ago)
I feel like this guy had a long, tall draught of the Kool aid, yo. Customer loyalty programs track what you shop so they can raise prices on the items you like! Sure, they prob send you some coupons, too. You're gonna need 'em for $20 razors.
random stuff (2 months ago)
Cynical, but somewhat true. I always felt like the grocery store was tracking what I liked buying so they could stop selling it. Over the course of 2 years, they stopped selling over 50% of the things I bought on a weekly basis. When I asked the manager about it, she said it was a supplier issue; they can't stock items that no longer exist. Perhaps I should become a consultant. Have stores pitch products to me and if I like it, tell them it won't sell XD
Dani Erter (1 year ago)
what is this job called? how can I become someone like that guy, what do I have to study?
Bonnie Hundley (8 months ago)
Actually, it's psychology. It's consumer behavior research.
Mattia Sesta (1 year ago)
its called neuromarketing mate, take a degree in marketing and sky's the limit
I think it's called Trade Marketing @Dani Erter
Tiago Gomes (1 year ago)
Maybe you should start by studying social sciences.
Phil R (2 years ago)
straightened product is found on Avg 3 seconds quicker
Mercuric redRoad (2 years ago)
I think so creepy to stoke someone like government or big company who want to collect every data user information.
Becky R (3 years ago)
True. In the meantime, though, most of the independents will likely go out of business.
Buzz Zu (3 years ago)
Becky R (3 years ago)
How can this help local, independent retailers, who may not be able to afford consultants and high tech solutions?
random stuff (2 months ago)
Research that is published can benefit anyone who bothers to track it down and read it. You can also learn some of the tricks the "big boys" use by watching Ted talks like this one as well as other videos on marketing and on how stores get you to spend more than you intended. This video gave very specific information about eye tracking and where shoppers look the most. Anyone who watched the vid now has the knowledge and can use it as they see fit. Personally, I watch these kinds of vids to see what tricks stores use so that I can be on the lookout for them and not get suckered into shelling out more cash than I intended.
Marco Dange (1 year ago)
SquiggsMitchell lĺo
SquiggsMitchell (2 years ago)
+Becky R I don't think consultants and expensive tech are necessarily needed to do the same thing. Individuals retailers can experiment themselves by observing and analyzing their customers and how they act in the store.
indianetizen (3 years ago)
it isn't watching shoppers, IT'S STALKING UNINFORMED SHOPPERS !!
Ghost Murmur (7 months ago)
blinkinglightbeacon (3 years ago)
enhancing my shopping experience, bullshit.  it's only about making money money money money and I find this to be incredibly depressing.
random stuff (2 months ago)
Of course its all about the almighty dollar. If they use it in a way that's mutually beneficial, its not as bad. Unfortunately, much of this research is being abused to get people to buy stuff they don't need and would not normally buy. Just look at mobile games. Pay to win is exploding in profits despite the fact that the games themselves aren't really all that fun. They're designed to be addictive rather than fun and are designed to employ all variety of psychological tricks to get you to spend your cash without even realizing it.
Omar Alshalahi (3 years ago)
ص. ء ججمةعًً ك. Zu115
Felicia Arias (3 years ago)
ye en (4 years ago)
Fanforum (4 years ago)

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