Use of Active RFID in understanding shopping cart
Recently, the Wharton Business School at the University of Pennsylvania, collected data from Active RFID enabled shopping carts to gauge how shoppers traverse grocery stores. The expected result was that shoppers would move up and down aisles until they had finished shopping. However, researchers discovered that shoppers went down only the aisles that interested them and would often reverse direction once they obtained the item they sought.
The active RFID system used in the study was PathTracker developed by Sorensen Associates. The active tags were fitted to each shopping cart and provided locational data to the various readers situated throughout the store every few seconds. This data could then be graphically portrayed to illustrate cart pathways.
Needless to say, this type of research has important implications for understanding buying decisions and quantifying the effectiveness of in-store marketing and packaging decisions.