Beyond sales: What can foot traffic tell us about other company KPIs?

Barney Bruce-Smythe, Senior Associate (London)

Post feature

Below we highlight key findings from an academic paper on the relationship between foot traffic and quarterly KPIs in six different industries. We also draw attention to several alternative data providers relevant to readers interested in applying the research into practice.


As most readers are aware, foot traffic is a well-researched area of alternative data – there is even research dating back to the 1940s on the data’s use cases. However, the lion’s share of academic research on the topic typically focuses on:

  • The correlation that foot traffic has with one industry only, which is more often than not retail.
  • Analysing the correlation that foot traffic has to company sales only, and not to any other KPIs (e.g. inventory turnover, total liabilities).
  • Marketing/strategic use cases (e.g. how to identify the best trade areas for an apparel store to expand their locations based on consumer traffic).

In this Literature Review, we will be discussing

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