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ShopperTrak Expands Retail Traffic-Counting Methods, Revises Traffic Forecast

— Company says holiday retail traffic will be 10 percent less than 2012 —

CHICAGO – Nov. 22, 2013 – ShopperTrak, the world’s leading provider of retail analytics and the industry’s most consistently accurate predictor of holiday sales and traffic, has expanded its forecasting dataset to include more stores and categories. 

The company’s updated holiday forecasts are based on traffic information from every U.S. retail outlet the company monitors and will reflect information gathered from more categories of stores, including dollar stores, home furnishings, sporting goods, office supply, gifts stores and mass merchandise. ShopperTrak will continue to offer specific data for the Apparel & Accessories, Wireless & Electronics and Enclosed Mall sectors in addition to a total retail forecast.

            “As the industry leader, we continue to develop innovative solutions to provide our clients with a holistic view of the ever-changing retail landscape,” says ShopperTrak Chief Product Officer Chetan Ghai. “We refined our models and methodologies to accommodate customer requests to be included in the index. By expanding the universe of data included and evolving to a census model, clients will have a broader and more familiar comparison basis while retaining the ability to drill down to our traditional sectors.” 

ShopperTrak is the only company that forecasts in-store shopper traffic. The company’s sales and traffic forecasts for peak shopping seasons — including back-to-school and the holiday season — are also considered to be the most accurate in the industry. ShopperTrak’s sales forecasts, known as the National Retail Sales Estimate (NRSE), typically are within a few percentage points of the General Merchandise, Apparel and Accessories, Furniture and Other Sales (GAFO) totals that the Department of Commerce announces. The NRSE also precedes those government reports by about six weeks.

The new traffic forecasting methodology arrives just in time to help retailers understand shopper traffic trends during the busiest retail season of the year. ShopperTrak’s more powerful traffic estimates will allow retailers to adjust their last-minute promotions, product placement and staffing to maximize their sales efforts. 

“Our customers seek answers to their most critical business challenges,” says Ghai. “By providing broader and deeper insights into consumer shopping behavior, we bring them a clearer view of the total retail market.”

Holiday Traffic Forecast Revised Significantly

With its new methodology and expanded sample size, ShopperTrak now forecasts that 10 percent fewer shoppers will visit brick and mortar stores in the holiday months of November and December than did in 2012. This is more than the 1.4 percent decline in shopper traffic the company projected in September, when it used its smaller sample size methodology. Additionally, ShopperTrak expects traffic in electronics and appliance stores will decrease by 11.5 percent compared to 2012.

However, bright spots endure in the updated holiday forecast. The company expects retail traffic to rise 5 percent in the apparel and accessories category over 2012. ShopperTrak’s sales forecast remains unchanged – the company predicts GAFO retail sales will increase 2.4 percent in the months of November and December compared to last year.

About ShopperTrak

ShopperTrak is the leading global provider of shopper insights and analytics to improve retail profitability and effectiveness. Retailers rely on ShopperTrak for the most comprehensive and integrated solution for accurate retail store traffic counting, interior analytics and industry benchmarking to better understand in-store shopper behavior. More than 750 of the world’s leading retail brands have ShopperTrak services deployed in over 60,000 locations across 90 countries and territories. The Chicago-based company has more than 200 employees, with offices in San Francisco; High Wycombe, England; Dubai, United Arab Emirates; Shenzhen, China; and Helsinki, Finland. Find out more at http://www.shoppertrak.com.

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Posted 11.21.2013

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