Using AlphaMap to Understand Consumer Buying Behavior

The adage ‘know thy customer’ rings true for anyone wishing to succeed in the retail sector of commercial real estate (CRE).

Getting to know the people that work, shop, and create inside your business involves extensive market research.

It’s not hard to imagine that in CRE, there are hundreds, if not thousands of people, passing through commercial properties daily. Collecting consumer insights from all these interactions is a challenging and time-consuming job.

We’ve put together this guide to show you how AlphaMap, a powerful geographic information systems (GIS) location insights tool, can simplify and enhance your customer research process. Read on to discover how.

Why is Knowing Your Customer All-Important?

Understanding the consumer buying behavior of your target audience helps you with key decision-making in CRE.

Whether you're a broker looking for reliable tenants, a developer seeking the perfect location for a new retail center, an investor considering a property deal, or a shop owner figuring out what to stock, knowing your customer helps you plan and adapt in the competitive retail space.

What are Consumer Insights?

Consumer insights  encompass demographic and psychographic information about your typical customers.

In essence, they provide a deep understanding of consumer buying behavior, preferences, and motivations. These insights are derived from a wide range of data sources, such as:

• Demographics

• Purchasing behavior

• Psychographics

• Customer feedback

• Competitor data

In CRE, consumer insights play a critical role in aspects such as determining prime locations and optimizing tenant mixes.

Using AlphaMap to Uncover Consumer Buying Behavior

AlphaMap is a GIS-based location insights tool designed specifically for CRE, akin to a 'Google Maps' for the industry.

It combines data mining techniques with industry-leading analytics platforms.

It also integrates machine learning algorithms to simplify recognizing patterns, preferences, and trends in consumer behavior.

As a cloud-based GIS analytics tool, AlphaMap offers:

• Data on over 10 million commercial properties across the US

• Insights gathered from over 40 different data sets

• Location data from over 100 million mobile devices

Using GIS dramatically improves retail strategy by combining spatial data with consumer-centric data sets. Retailers can easily identify optimal locations for stores and forecast demand fluctuations based on local preferences.

With AlphaMap, retailers can analyze factors like foot traffic, demographic clusters, and competitor proximity, leading to more efficient retail placement and improved customer engagement strategies.

AlphaMap’s GIS-based approach has also helped retailers tailor marketing campaigns and product assortments to specific geographic regions, boosting customer satisfaction and sales.

Finding Location and Consumer Insights with AlphaMap

Here’s a quick overview of some of the tools on the AlphaMap platform that aid in customer and market research:

Property Records

Find a collection of information, compiled from numerous official records, to enable you to find out everything you need to know about a property and its ownership history in one place. You can use this information to find out more about your target customer and tenant profile, among other useful bits of information.

The kind of details you can expect to find include:

• Details of the current property owners and their contact information

• Historical data on property ownership

• A record of property tax payments

• History of any debts associated with the property

• Information about current tenants

• Specifics on the building's structure, lot size, and geographical location details

Location-Based Population and Demographic Data

Look up a specific property or location and get access to in-depth population and demographic statistics and trends. You get access to:

• Current data and a five-year forecast for a comprehensive range of population and demographic statistics

• Present and projected data for consumer expenditure over the next five years

Use these statistics to analyze your consumer’s buying behavior for a specific commercial property.

Using AlphaMap to Understand Consumer Buying Behavior
Using AlphaMap to Understand Consumer Buying Behavior

Foot Traffic Data and Trends

Utilizing data analysis from more than 100 million mobile devices, AlphaMap offers in-depth insights into foot-traffic patterns for properties throughout the US.

Foot traffic data is incredibly useful for uncovering your customers’ purchasing patterns over specific periods of time.
With the addition of data from mobile smart phones, these visitation statistics are extremely accurate.

Here’s what you’ll find about foot traffic on AlphaMap:

• Trends in foot-traffic visitation over time

• Detailed hourly and daily foot-traffic data

• Analysis of average visit duration and cross-visitation patterns

• Metrics on capture rate and customer retention

• Comprehensive profiles of customer demographics

Location Rankings

Leveraging our robust foot-traffic analytics, we enable you to assess the performance of a retail property or brand through various lenses:

Brand Comparison: Gauge the performance of a specific location against other outlets of the same brand — be it within a city, state, or nationwide.

Category Comparison: Evaluate how a site fares compared to other establishments within the same business category — locally, statewide, or nationally.

Trend Analysis: Observe the shifts in relative performance over a designated period.

Trade Area Analysis

AlphaMap’s trade area analysis tool unlocks actionable insights into consumer buying behaviors, demographics, population, and shopping patterns.

You can measure trade area using different methods:

Foot-Traffic Based Trade Area: Discover the living and working locations of actual customers, using data sourced from over 100 million cell phones. This method offers a highly accurate representation of a trade area and is gaining traction in the industry.

Drive-Time Trade Area: Get a visual representation of the time required to travel to or from a property, helping you understand accessibility and convenience.

Radius-Based Trade Area: Use the traditional method of radius rings to evaluate an area, offering a straightforward approach to spatial analysis.

Car Traffic Analysis

Explore comprehensive AADT car traffic data across the US, covering more than 2.65 million miles of roadways. Our analysis offers:

Directional Traffic Counts: Detailed insights into the flow of traffic, providing direction-specific data.

Daily Traffic Counts: Comprehensive data on the volume of cars using the roads each day.

Hourly Traffic Counts: In-depth traffic analysis on an hourly basis, perfect for understanding peak traffic times and patterns.


Shift from traditional methods to the most advanced tenant recommendation tool available. TenantFinder™ streamlines the process of finding your next tenant.

It’s like an advanced void analysis tool that helps you find a high-quality tenant match with remarkable speed and accuracy.

Features include:

Largest Brand Database: Access over 100,000 brands, ranging from major national retailers to local family-owned businesses.

Comprehensive Contact Information: The most extensive database of contact information for brands, ensuring you can connect easily.

Automated Match Analysis: Generate and dispatch tailored reports to potential prospects, enhancing your outreach and engagement efforts.

Navigating the Challenges and Opportunities

Navigating the world of consumer data is no easy task, especially when it comes to interpreting and applying the data. The sheer volume and speed of data sources make it difficult to find meaningful insights. Consumer data is often clouded by bias, incomplete information or changing consumer behavior.

Within these challenges, however, lie huge opportunities for retail development and growth. Data-driven insights open doors to unprecedented understanding of consumer buying behavior and market patterns.

With the right analytics tools, retailers can achieve various strategic goals:

• Personalize consumer experiences

• Optimize inventory

• Adjust marketing to meet changing consumer needs

• Improve operational efficiencies

Consumer data drives innovation, which in turn creates competitive advantages. It can open new avenues for sustainable growth if applied correctly.

Embracing the Future of Retail with Consumer Insights and Data-Driven Strategies

As we move forward, the integration of consumer insights and data-driven decision-making is reshaping the retail landscape.

Retailers and CRE professionals are increasingly harnessing predictive analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) to understand and engage with consumers more effectively.

These advanced technologies help to uncover nuanced consumer buying behaviors, enabling retailers to fine-tune marketing strategies and inventory management in real time.

The future of retail hinges on the ability to anticipate customer needs and desires, using these insights to forge stronger, more personalized connections. As retailers adapt their approaches to include cutting-edge algorithms and machine learning, they're equipped to make swift, informed decisions that cater to evolving market conditions.

In an era where market trends shift rapidly, the ability to adapt quickly is essential for long-term success and staying ahead of the competition. For a snapshot into how AlphaMap can help your business, connect with us to book a personalized demo today.

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