Quebec City, Canada - July 27, 2014: Two Women walk under umbrella during heavy rain in Quebec City, Canada, next to Chateau Frontenac.

A new technology is helping retailers predict how changes in the weather impact consumer behaviour in real-time.

The cutting-edge technology can help retailers make key decisions around inventory, supply chain, staffing, promotions and even merchandising to boost their bottom line.

Weather Signals, a partnership between the Weather Company and IBM, uses historic and real-time data around consumer purchasing behaviour and in-store foot traffic and measures it against weather patterns.

The tool can show retailers how fluctuations in temperature, wind, humidity and other weather conditions are likely to impact business performance.

Jamie Azzopardi, country head of the Weather Company at IBM, told Retailbiz that the tool analyses client transaction data or click-through rates over a two-year period.

“We can then identify trend and behaviours and give advice and insights to the organisation around decisions they should be making,” he said.

“It’s not just about helping them with decisions around how to place products on the front-end but can also be about media spend such as do they focus on certain geographies.”

Once the data is analysed, retailers can then make decisions around merchandising, product display and stock, promotions and supply chain based on the forecast level of customer traffic.

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