What are people counters and why are they important?

As many retailers are gradually reopening their doors to the public, they are faced with the challenge of limiting and tracking the number of shoppers in their stores.
Knowing how many people are in a given building might seem like an easy task. In reality, getting up-to-date information is a complex challenge. This is especially true when the purpose is to ensure the safety of staff or visitors or to optimize operations.
What are people counters?
People counters are electronic devices that count the number of individuals passing through a defined space. The technology used varies from simple solutions using light beams, to more complex dedicated sensors that employ stereo cameras or time of flight sensors. And then there are video analytics solutions that can perform this task using regular video surveillance cameras.
But why is it important to keep track of the number of people in buildings and facilities? There are many reasons that span a broad range of applications, from security considerations, optimization of operations to efficiency in profitability.
Why count people?
One of the biggest challenges in the retail industry is measuring how many customers enter a store throughout the day. 
When an advertising campaign’s primary goal is to announce the opening of a new store, for example, foot traffic becomes the key performance indicator to track the success of the campaign. 
How they help
People counters can help to evaluate and compare the number of people visiting stores before and after any campaign execution, and while initial sales may not be very high, its marketing effectiveness is considered high. 
When a decline in the number of sales is measured over time, simple tracking of the number of people who enter and buy something versus the number of people that don’t buy anything, can help to identify the source of the problem. This is commonly known as the conversion rate. 
The ability to count people beyond retail
The transportation industry can also benefit from people counting technology. Here are some practical examples:
  • Tracking the number of passengers throughout the day for operational scaling 
  • Measuring key indicators such as cost per passenger
  • Obtaining information to support decisions related to the programming and forecasting of the service
Understanding the flow of passengers at service counters and the current number of occupants is important data for transportation industries.
Occupancy levels can be monitored with the intention of keeping track of rush hours so more staff can be dedicated during these periods to increase efficiency and avoid delays in services.
It’s also helpful to know which entrances and exits have more traffic and at what times of the day. 
People counting in corporate buildings
A similar problem is that of corporations, government offices on university campuses with sprawling installations. How is the space being utilized? How many working spaces are free in an open-plan office? How is the cafeteria being used? Is the boardroom for 20 people on the fifth floor used?
These seem like simple questions but space optimization is important for all industries and understanding the flow of people provides invaluable data for decision making.
About the KiwiVision People Counter
The video analytics solutions from Genetec gives you the option to connect and combine information to increase security levels and optimize operations for your business. KiwiVision™ People Counter within Security Center Omnicast provides occupancy levels as well as information on the number of people entering and leaving your facilities. 
KiwiVision People Counter Dashboard
Additionally, the solution includes widgets available through the dashboards in Security Desk. This gives you the ability to visualize entry and exit counts, track occupancy levels, and create daily activity reports.
Want to learn more about the KiwiVision People Counter?

Check out the brochure here

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