A better understanding of customers’ buying impulses with eye tracking glasses

Today, web marketing allows us to obtain numerous statistics regarding internet users and advertising, from the suitability of commercial locations to changing commercial strategy. However, it is difficult to access consumers’ innate behaviour in such subjective matters as packaging types or shelf placement. Eye tracking enables a study of this subconscious behaviour thanks to the visual interactions of the customer. Is this a revolution for companies always on the lookout for relevant and reliable marketing policy?

What is eye tracking and what are the benefits for businesses or companies?

It goes without saying that information gleaned from internet users’ consumer habits represents an exceptional gold mine for all marketing professionals of both small and large commercial or industrial structures.

Nevertheless, even if customer habits can be predicted by data made available by digital information on consumers’ surfing habits, their “instinctive” habits in a shop-situation or in front of a screen rely on variable data which up until now has not been exact.

Subconscious habits are incidentally often very difficult to express, even for the customers themselves. Questions such as “Why are you attracted to this product rather than another?”, or even “What type of shelf placement are you drawn to when you enter a commerce?”, are more often than not posed without receiving an adequate response. Thanks to eye tracking, all these questions will finally receive relevant answers!

Consumers’ visual behaviour can be methodically analysed thanks to glasses with sensors which monitor the direction of their gaze. Using heat maps, eye tracking enables us to determine so-called hot zones in a retail shop. These are the gaze points or products that draw the most attention, as well as the opposite, so-called cold zones; the shelves or highlighted products that customers do not pay attention to.

Equipping businesses with innovative and high-tech tools in marketing: a superfluous or necessary cost?

Thanks to eye tracking the data furnished by customers’ visual behaviour enables us to rethink shelf placement, uninteresting packaging or even web habits. This opens enormous possibilities of information sourcing for companies!

However cutting-edge technology currently comes with a cost that cannot be considered negligible. Soon to be commercialised, the new version of the famous Tobii Pro Glasses dedicated to eye tracking possesses a wide-angle HD scene video camera as well as a gyro and an accelerometer. It also has the possibility of sound. This technological marketing jewel has of course a price (excluding VAT): 22,000 € or around 800 € on a monthly rental basis.

Currently eye tracking represents a significant cost in a company’s marketing policy, especially as this price does not take into account post-analysis once the customer data has been collected. Even if there is little doubt that the price will drop in the future, it seems more appropriate to consider eye tracking as a complement to current statistical web marketing tools.

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