Video Surveillance & Physical Security Industry Viewpoints
June 28th, 2021
Author: Grant Jensen

How Banks Can Track Unique Visitor Traffic and Activity Using Video Analysis

Customer Analytic Data is Key to Optimizing Bank Branches

Banks invest significantly in building and maintaining physical branches. To ensure that those branches are most effective at retaining current customers and acquiring new ones, they need to understand how customers and prospective customers use the branch, and how employees engage branch visitors. It is important for bank managers to understand not only the aggregate number of visits to branch, but the actual statistics of individuals that visited – even if they returned multiple times –a branch, how they interacted at the branch, and how long their visit lasted. Likewise, they need to understand whether their staff are efficiently serving those customers. Those metrics can be difficult to obtain with conventional foot traffic solutions or observational surveys. This blog post will specifically discuss how bank directors benefit by using video analytics to obtain precise data regarding unique customer and employee traffic and activity.

Make Better Use of Video Surveillance

For decades, banks have been very adept at using video surveillance (CCTV) cameras to augment physical security in their branches and corporate offices. In recent years many banks have realized that there is a wealth of valuable information in the video footage that those CCTV cameras collect. To harness that data, they have implemented video analytics software, which can identify, classify and index objects in surveillance video to make it searchable, actionable and quantifiable based on the extracted and catalogued metadata. The software can analyze video in real-time or on-demand, and aggregate data over time to deliver statistical and trend intelligence.

Certainly, video content analysis is widely used for security because it enables bank branch managers to improve situational awareness for security teams and accelerate investigations. From compiling a watchlist of known card skimmers and using face recognition to identify any faces that potentially match members of that list, so that a human operator can assess and qualify the match and determine the best response. Similarly, license plate recognition can be used to identify known perpetrators based on their vehicles plates and alert security that further investigation – and possibly intervention – is necessary.

Using Video Data Beyond Security

Besides being a crucial asset for security teams, video intelligence software is increasingly used to enhance customer service, property management, and overall operations. Bank branches can use it to monitor the average length of time that customers spend in a bank lobby, or in a teller queue, for example. Property managers can view heatmaps to better understand the typical foot traffic patterns throughout a branch to optimize space utilization. Marketing managers can gather demographic data about the customers visiting a bank branch and whether they dwell in certain areas of a bank lobby or product kiosks. The list goes on and on – there are broad video analytic applications across different departments in diverse banking environments.

Derive Accurate Customer Traffic Reports

When analyzing customer traffic data, one of the biggest challenges for banks is that traditional solutions such as foot traffic counters may be able to count the number of customers who have passed through an area, but such reports often inadvertently include employees in the traffic report results. With comprehensive video analytics software that can combine people-counting and face recognition, banks can create a digital watchlist of employees and exclude employee faces from traffic reports, which eliminates inaccurate customer traffic reports. Advanced video content analytics can also anonymously recognize distinct customer identities and deliver customer metrics such as bounce rate, unique customer visit duration, or repeat customer visits.

Measure Staff Footfall Traffic and Productivity

Similarly, managers can observe unique employee behavior patterns to track employee footfall and filter data to observe employee traffic and navigation throughout a building, to ensure that customers are effectively served.

This tracking can also be used to detect compliance – or lack thereof – with policies, such as having two associates present to cash count or whether a non-employee is present when a bank account is being opened at a teller desk. Whether in real-time or by investigating suspected non-compliance, retail banks can better understand when policies are or are not being followed with the ability to detect, identify, and track known employees to the exclusion of visitors.

The examples above are just some of the key ways in which banks can use video analytics software and facial recognition, that go above and beyond the traditional forensic review of video footage to investigate security incidents. Bank marketing and customer service departments can use video data to gain accurate customer and employee traffic data that indicates how their customers interact with bank branch environments, product displays, and with bank staff. Banking directors can use that valuable business intelligence to optimize marketing campaigns, plan staff schedules, improve customer service, and improve the floor layout of bank branches.