Retailing today is a tough business
and store owners face many challenges. The most obvious of these are theft and inventory shrinkage which eat into the stores’ profits.
Retail surveillance using network video solutions such as IP cameras is an excellent weapon in the battle to protect your business. By deterring crime, it reduces losses and creates a safer environment for staff and customers.
This versatile technology can make numerous other positive contributions to the store’s operations besides loss prevention. For example, it can help store owners manage queues, count people and monitor flow control.
It can provide information to support the development of better store layouts - via heat mapping and dwell time applications. Outside the store itself, network video can be connected to access control systems, or used for general surveillance of the building’s exterior and parking lot. License plate recognition is also possible, thanks to the high quality of the images generated. All of these cross functional applications make retail stores safer for visitors and more profitable for the owners.
For these and many other reasons, network video is today regarded as a vital part of any successful retail operation, regardless of its size.
Below, see cross-functional use of network video in action:
Modern retail businesses often employ a variety of technologies to facilitate business in the stores – such as electronic cash registers, alarms and people counting applications. One of the major advantages of IP-surveillance is that it complies with open industry standards, and can therefore be easily integrated with these other applications. An IP-surveillance system can also be triggered by another system, so e.g. surveillance footage is always captured in connection with an alarm, or whenever the electronic cash register system is activated.
The key difference between traditional CCTV and network video surveillance is that a network system is IP-based. In other words, surveillance images are captured and distributed over an IP network. Shop owners, managers and security experts can therefore monitor these images from their desks – or indeed any location with an Internet connection. They can even monitor several retail outlets at the same time. Recorded images are usually stored remotely or in the shop itself.
Remember the old adage “The whole is greater than the
sum of its parts?” Nowhere is that truism more evident
than when you add network video to the current
generation of Internet of Things (IoT) solutions.
Whether we’re talking about industrial IoT applications,
“Smart – X” (city, building, parking etc.) or retail
operations, integrating network video into the solution
provides value far beyond simple situational awareness.
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While retailers are being proactive in combatting crime,
much work remains to be done.
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The 23 large retailers who were surveyed comprise 16,038
stores across the country with over $370 billion in
sales in 2016 and they reported 438,000 incidents of
shoplifting and employee theft where suspects were
apprehended. A staggering $120 million was recovered by
retailers from these thieves.
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