More than three in five (60%) UK retailers are planning to adopt network IP over the next three years, up from just a quarter in 2012, an Axis-commissioned survey has revealed.
Nearly a third (32%) of respondents to the annual survey, which was conducted by the Centre for Retail Research (CRR), have already migrated from analogue systems – a 2.5% year-on-year rise in take-up.
The infographic at the foot of this article depicts the survey’s key findings.
Now in its fourth year the survey polled 2,200 retailers and received 673 responses from across northern Europe.
“The migration from analogue CCTV to network IP continues to be of huge importance to the retail industry with the majority of UK retailers now planning to convert in the next three years,” says Atul Rajput, regional director of northern Europe at Axis Communications.
“This is therefore likely to be the biggest single factor impacting on retail security as digital surveillance and network video become the standard. Certainly for the UK, I believe that the migration to network IP has become the norm and it is no longer a question of ‘if’ but ‘when’ the technology will be adopted.”
Nearly a quarter (24%) of retailers said their principal reason for using surveillance cameras was to prevent or investigate theft, while 80% cited prevention of internal or external theft and better safety as the main drivers of using CCTV.
“The UK as a whole has embraced the benefits that CCTV can bring and the country’s retailers are no exception,” says Rajput. “Twenty two percent of those surveyed stated that the main benefit of CCTV was to reduce theft with an estimated average fall in loss of 15% – the highest prediction in northern Europe and up on the previous year.
“Couple this with the fact that 14% of respondents cite ‘quality of image’ as an important driver for the use of network video – a 40% increase on the previous year – and it’s clear to see that the high definition images that network video can offer, are critically important for retailers in driving down theft and improving safety.”
Asked which non-security applications influenced their decision to adopt IP, more than a quarter (27%) of IP converts cited ‘integration with business intelligence applications’ as the main attraction.
“High street stores are still the origin of most retail transactions but carry the highest overheads, so the need to reduce cost and complexity of in-store surveillance systems and, at the same time, ‘sweat the assets’ further, is vital,” continues Rajput. “This is where network IP really has the advantage as it can be used to improve both service and sales, not just security, to deliver a real return on investment.”
“The use of cloud-based video systems has shown an increase in interest from UK retailers and so too has the interest around non-security applications. Nearly half (49.9%) of respondents were interested in queue management and people counting (49.2%) as new tools to improve both operational sales and marketing performance.
“As well as the rise of non-security applications, big data, cloud and mobile technologies are all trends that are impacting on the retail sector. As network video is an open platform solution and can seamlessly allow integration with these technologies, it can help to maximise the return on in-store video investment by extending its use beyond pure surveillance into a business optimisation tool.”
CRR director Professor Joshua Bamfield says: “The survey clearly highlights the continued move towards IP-based camera systems across the retail sector, a growing trend that is driven by the need for HD-quality images and the increased adoption and use of business-focussed analytics – two areas where IP systems demonstrate a clear advantage over older technologies.