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Understanding the Use of Video in Retail

Understanding the Use of Video in Retail


Background and Context

Within retailing, the use of a range of video technologies is not only longstanding, but also increasingly ubiquitous – it is hard these days to find a segment of retail space that is not under the gaze of some form of video system. However, use does not always translate into tangible benefits, indeed, early studies found little evidence that these systems had much of a lasting impact on levels of retail loss and invariably it was almost impossible to achieve a favourable Return on Investment (ROI) on purely retail loss reductions alone. It is therefore important to look very carefully at how current and future video systems can/might contribute to the retail environment – what benefits can they bring, how might these benefits be achieved and in what ways can this investment be maximised to have the greatest effect?

Purpose of Research

The purpose of this research is twofold:

  • Understand how retail companies are now using particular video technologies in their businesses.
  • Develop a video technologies implementation maturity model that captures both the development of use cases and the approaches adopted in their application and use.

It is proposed to focus upon approximately 10 use cases, selected from the following:

Body Worn Cameras

Supply Chain – Pick Accuracy Monitoring

Identifying/Responding to Suspicious In-store Behaviour

Linking Types of EPOS Transactions to Video Recording

Number Plate Recognition              Technologies

Delivering Business Intelligence

Feature/Facial Recognition Technologies

Virtual Store Visits

Controlling Self-scan Related Risks

Managing On-shelf Availability

Managing Health & Safety

Responding to attempted/actual store burglaries

Managing/Responding to In-store Violence

Responding to alarms

Managing Refund Frauds

Customer counting/flow

Managing Product Waste Recording

Access control

Delivery Vehicle/Staff Monitoring

CCTV Hubs: alarm monitoring, store-based incident monitoring, incident analysis


The study will start with an online survey of the top 100 retailers in the US and Europe to identify the extent to which retailers are utilising some of these video technologies. This will then be followed up with detailed interviews with representatives from retailers prepared to share their experiences and outcomes of using them.


The study will generate the following: a detailed research report (in electronic form); a webinar summarising the key results from the study; a one-day interactive workshop based upon the findings from the study.


The study will be carried out in 2019 with the results presented at an ECR event in January 2020.

Call for Retailers

If you would like to participate in the research, there will be no cost, and have data to share, then please contact ECR @ colinmpeacock@ecr-shrink-group.com