Forest City Enterprises uses Wi-Fi to monitor foot traffic in most of the nearly 20 shopping centers it owns or manages. It says the data helped it decide where to move an escalator that was interfering with an entrance. The company also measures how long visitors stay after a fashion show or concert. Stephanie Shriver-Engdahl, Forest City’s president of digital strategy, says the company wants to know, “Do they get one soda, hop in the car, and leave? Or are they staying longer?” In the future, foot-traffic data could be used to set lease prices, she says.
Man I hate this stuff. I’m tempted to keep WiFi off on my iPhone until I need it, as LTE is fast enough 80% of the time.
On the other hand, from the retailer perspective, this is going to be a big deal as they struggle to compete with Amazon and the suggestions it makes to customers.