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Data analytics firm Nielsen has released a virtual reality tool in the UK, as it looks to help retailers in the country understand shopper behaviour.

Nielsens Smartstore VR tool is designed to help retailers improve the customer experience

Nielsen's Smartstore VR tool is designed to help retailers improve the customer experience

Earlier this week, the company unveiled 'Smartstore' - a VR tool that recreates the layout of a potential or existing store and allows retailers to evaluate the space in order to improve customer experience. The tool is designed to help retailers optimise concepts such as shelf layouts, new locations, promotional displays and POS designs.

Smartstore uses VR gaming technology to "build a live environment and create immersive scenarios" in order to analyse shopper experiences, Nielsen said. A 'playback' function allows retailers to review an in-store shopper journey and tag "problem moments".

"The UK retail landscape is experiencing significant and ongoing changes, which in turn means changes to consumer shopping mindset and behaviour," said Madhur Mehra, head of consumer insights UK at Nielsen. "With shoppers increasingly rationalising their spend, in-store execution and shopper activation take centre stage. It is essential that manufacturers and brand owners understand in-store shopper behaviour and their priorities in order to lure them with the right offering."

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