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How can smart counters help businesses achieve social distancing?

Social distancing is likely here to stay, and although it presents a lot of challenges, it is something businesses will have to adapt to in order to continue operating.

Ultimately, successful social distancing within a venue or other public space comes down to volume control. 

We’ve seen many venues – supermarkets and small highstreet retailers for example –  implement a one-in-one-out strategy, where a member of staff stands at the entrance to control the flow of customers in and out of the store. This ensures they do not exceed their maximum ‘customer density’ and it gives everyone inside the best chance of being able to adhere, where possible, to the two metre social distancing rule. 

Moving forward, accurately tracking and effectively monitoring the number of customers in a venue at any one time is going to be key, and this is going to need to be done on a much larger scale as we move back to a ‘normal’ way of living, and more and more businesses begin to re-open.

Smart counters or smart tracking technology will play a huge part in helping businesses adhere to social distancing rules and to control the volume of customers in their venues. 

Smart counters allow businesses to use a piece of software on their mobile or other portable devices to count customers in and out of stores. The data is then fed into a dashboard that can be shared with members of the wider team; giving everyone a clear understanding of the venue’s overall safety status and lets them know – through a red, amber, green (RAG) rating – when action needs to be taken to maintain social distancing and ensure safe business operations.

Purple has been working hard to quickly develop a smart counter that feeds into a new social responsibility dashboard. And to support businesses through the Coronavirus pandemic, we are giving venues full access for the dashboard and its features for free.

The smart counter is just one feature linked with the social responsibility dashboard. Businesses can also use the dashboard to:

  • Keep a close eye on the number of customers in their venue at any one time
  • Monitor how close they are to reaching their social distancing threshold
  • Identify trends in cumulative visits overtime
  • Share the data collected with their internal systems via an API, and so share this data more publicly with customers for reassurance
  • Monitor their overall hygiene rating – as voted for by their customers through predefined surveys that can be sent following a visit
  • Keep track of how satisfied their customers are through prompting customers to leave an NPS score

Collecting real-time information on customer footfall will be just one of the steps businesses need to achieve social distancing. Not only will it help them ensure a safe environment, it will also give employees and customers the reassurance they need to begin frequently visiting venues again.   

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