Fujitsu develops simulation technology to model shopper movement
Fujitsu Laboratories Ltd has developed a simulation technology that models customers’ behavior as they shop, making it possible to visualize the complex circumstances surrounding crowding in stores.
The new development applies social simulations to the real-world business problem of a retail store layout design. In a retail store, the layout and number of cash registers can have a significant impact on crowding. Although queuing theory has long made it possible to analyze waiting times in lines at cash registers, it has not been possible to grasp the ways that the layout of a store can effect in-store crowding.
By modeling the behavior of shoppers at cash registers, the technology reproduces the conditions that lead to crowding. This makes it possible to compare crowding levels under different conditions and to understand the factors that cause crowding, enabling informed decisions based on more information.