Satellites Used to Track Black Friday Mall Traffic

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News Posted: Fri, Nov 26 2010 9:49 PM
Those satellites in space don't just take spy pictures. On this Black Friday 2010, they are actually taking pictures of you, and your rush to Black Friday deals.

The research is being done to see what consumer demand this year means for retail stocks. The trend, so far, has been favorable.

The companies involved in this are Remote Sensing Metrics and Digital Globe. Remote Sensing Metrics is a Chicago-based consulting firm that analyzes the satellite imagery. In turn, it purchases those images from Colorado-based company Digital Globe, which operates its own satellites.

Tom Diamond, CEO of Remote Sensing Metrics said
“2010 is proving to be a much better year in terms of traffic. Beginning in September 2010, late back-to-school shopping discounts boosted traffic as people shopped closer to the event.”
Remote Sensing Metrics told CNBC that the average shopping mall was 31.6 percent full in 2008 during the pre-Black Friday timeframe. However, in 2009, with the Great Recession in full force, that figure dropped to 31.0 percent full. This year, the pre-Black Friday run-up saw a 35 percent shopping mall fill rate.

This, quite naturally, bodes well for retailers this year. In fact, the satellite analysts believe that based on that pre-Black Friday data, the shopping season will prove to be a net positive over 2009, and even 2008, before the full Great Recession storm hit. Watch a CNBC report below.

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rapid1 replied on Sat, Nov 27 2010 1:27 PM

Just another factor in technology changing, and eventually dominating the retail market. I find it interesting to watch the world change from the previous standard to the new information age standards. I also do not understand why the market largely does not see the total change in it. I also am amazed by the resistance I see, being that it is in general much more efficient.

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bripage replied on Sat, Nov 27 2010 10:40 PM

This honestly cracks me up. People are paying for pictures that essentially dont offer any information in return. Wow.. someone is parked in the parking lot, it doesnt mean that that said individual has purchased anything. Nor does this show what happened in the minutes or hours prior/post picture capture. For all we know.. no one bought anything and they all left after having their picture taken.

Just another example of a stupid business idea that works because everyone is soooo desperate to have a good retail sales year. Could just focus on making quality products and providing excellent customer service again... or just buy pictures of my car sitting in the parking lot before i come pick it up because i was too drunk to drive it last night..

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rapid1 replied on Sun, Nov 28 2010 12:51 AM

Kind of like the Polling cameras I put in every Limited corporate store in Georgia. Limited corporate owns of course Limited, Express, Bath and Body works, Victoria's secret, and a few other brand stores. The reason the satellite images of a parking lot are valuable is they can see how densely populated there parking lot is on certain days, and times of year.

The polling cameras show a retailer how many come into a store during a certain sale, how many bags they walk in with, and how many they walk out with. Intelligent camera's also give them an estimate of sex age height and all other demographics that are discernible by the card.

Satellite camera's can give them a worth ratio on the cars, whether it is equipped with a GPS, what type of cellular phones they carry as well as number of, if they have laptops on board as well as many other things. Don't fool yourself big brother has all your numbers, if your car is over a certain year date they can probably discern if not you exact address at the least the area you live in. Heck they can even track you right now. If you live in a neighborhood and you see a lot of wireless network addresses I promise you half of them are Google, At&t, and Government private IP's.

Did you know I can most likely look at your house in real time on Google cams if I know your address, I found that out when I looked up an address for a home on sale, I could see into the large front living room window.

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manwong replied on Mon, Nov 29 2010 9:38 AM

rapid1, you need to lay off the crack, you're talking utter rubbish.

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