by Anh H. Nguyen
Malaysia is a multi-cultural society with influences from Chinese people, Indian people, native Malays, and many more ethnicities. There is also another culture, quite new yet distinctly Malaysian: the so-called "mall culture".
Indeed, visiting shopping malls is the nation's pastime. There are a total of 560 shopping malls with a combined floor area of 135 million square feet as of 2019. Some malls have over 3 million visitors per month. It is mind-boggling. For many Malaysians, the malls are the epicenter of their life, where they shop or just browse, dine, have a coffee, go to the gym, glide on a skating rink, watch a blockbuster movie, relax with a manicure, visit a theme park, attend a live concert, without even stepping foot outside.
The malls of Malaysia are getting many things right. They have become true destinations, with retail merely being one of their attractions. They sell concepts, experience, and entertainment. They seamlessly mix the idea of modern consumerism with traditional values by becoming communal spaces for families and friends to hang out together. Not only locals, tourists are lured by the siren songs of malls as well. Two prominent malls, the KLCC Suria and the Pavillion, are prominently and repeatedly featured on lists of things to do in Kuala Lumpur, which is also ranked as the 4th best shopping city in the world by CNN. They have a name for it: shopping tourism, a key factor for stimulating long-term growth of the country.
So it would seem like the malls of Malaysia are all set. Are they though?
High traffic is one thing. High conversion is another. People flock to malls every day, but it is not always easy to discern their motivations. If mall visitors simply seek a clean, calm, and cool haven to momentarily detach from the hectic, sometimes sweltering outside, and not shop, then there is a serious problem. If mall visitors want to shop, but the shops are not attractive enough, then that is another serious problem. If mall visitors want to shop and the shops are great at selling, but there are friction points in the mall’s common areas, there is another, you guessed it, serious problem. And even if the malls are great at accommodating visitors, could they do more to reach out to them when they are somewhere else?
That is why nowadays malls need better metrics in order to succeed. To measure those metrics, they need better tools.
This is a brief account of what success for Malaysian malls will look like with the help of AI-powered technology. Our AI-powered technology, to be exact:
- The most obvious one is optimal, even real-time marketing. A new-gen traffic counter that not only gives you the most accurate visitor count, excludes the staff, and eschews double counting issues, but also paints a vivid picture of visitors' demographics and behaviors, is essential for this. With this customer journey at their disposal, malls could identify marketing opportunities such as pop-up kiosks, live events, and digital signage targeted at visitors inside the mall.
- A few more exciting possibilities: when coupled with the POS data, this traffic counter would give mall operators a fully realized and clearly visualized mall-to-stores tunnel. The usages? Value quantification of different mall zones for lease negotiation. The ability to compare the capture rates of same-zone stores for merchandising/marketing improvement. Push notifications sent to customers' phones and tablets. Tailored offers on the mall apps aimed at up-selling, cross-selling, and increased retention.
The next question would be: how are we even going to achieve that?
Our AI technology is highly accurate, highly detailed, requires no extra hardware cost, and is simple to deploy. It not only measures the total footfall traffic in a mall but also tracks visitors inside the mall, their dwell time, and locations. It also tracks and connects customer flows from multiple CCTV cameras views, eliminating double counting issues even when shoppers revisit mall zones multiple times during their shopping session. Our AI technology also automatically excludes all unqualified traffic sources to give you the most accurate visitor count. Best of all, our system utilizes your existing CCTV cameras without needing any additional hardware devices. Our system is hardware agnostic with zero CAPEX deployment.
Excited yet? Ready for transformative insights that could change your mall game forever? Shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to see what we could do for you!