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The Differentiating Behaviour of Shoppers: Clustering of individual movement traces in a supermarket

Gil, J; Tobari, E; Lemlij, M; Rose, A; Penn, AR; (2009) The Differentiating Behaviour of Shoppers: Clustering of individual movement traces in a supermarket. In: Koch, D and Marcus, L and Steen, J, (eds.) Proceedings of the 7th International Space Syntax Symposium. Royal Institute of Technology (KTH): Stockholm, Sweden. Green open access


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In this paper we report on research into patterns of shopper movement and behaviour in a supermarket. It is an underlying assumption of much space syntax research that the population is relatively homogeneous in terms of the way it uses space, introduced by the theory of natural movement in urban environments where the density distribution of facilities varies and the spatial configuration is diverse. However, in the specific case of a supermarket where goods are very evenly distributed in a regular and even grid, we need to explore the variations in individual behaviour within the population to understand the movement patterns in the store. Using data of over 480 shoppers interviewed and individually tracked in their shopping trip in a supermarket, we develop methods of profiling different shoppers according to both demographic and behavioural factors. We show that there are distinct clusters of shopping strategy defined in terms of characteristic search trail through the store, and that these correlate with specific shopper profile. We conclude that in situations where the allocation of attractors to space is neither random nor correlated to spatial structure, different groups of people on different kinds of mission will adopt distinctive spatial behaviour. This suggests that the assumption of homogeneity may be ill founded, at least under these circumstances.

Type: Proceedings paper
Title: The Differentiating Behaviour of Shoppers: Clustering of individual movement traces in a supermarket
Event: 7th International Space Syntax Symposium
Location: Stockholm
Dates: 2009-06-08 - 2009-06-11
ISBN-13: 9789174153477
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://www.sss7.org/Proceedings/09%20New%20Modes%2...
Language: English
Additional information: Part of the 7th International Space Syntax Symposium, School of Architecture and the Built Environment, The Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Stockholm, Sweden, 8-11 June 2009. Please see http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/16409/, http://eprints.ucl.ac.uk/15021, http://eprints.ucl.ac.uk/15294, http://eprints.ucl.ac.uk/15301/, http://eprints.ucl.ac.uk/15302/, http://eprints.ucl.ac.uk/15303/, http://eprints.ucl.ac.uk/16184/, and http://eprints.ucl.ac.uk/16411 for other proceedings from this symposium
Keywords: space syntax, supermarket, shopper behaviour, movement patterns, k-means clustering
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1399218
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