ReCAP – Retail Location Data

By Brad Shelton

Ed Note: DataSource Technology and Competitive Analytics Professionals created a database of retail locations that is highly targeted and categorized for retail developers and marketers. Brad Shelton, of DataSource Technology, responded to our questions about the product, ReCAP. In this article, he explains what it is and how it came to be created.

Product Description
ReCAP location files provide complete and verified listings of retail locations for major retail categories in the United States. Coverage and geographic accuracy make these files ideal for spatial information systems and modeling use, as well as for mailing lists. ReCAP is currently divided into 62 major categories. We are investigating the feasibility of including several more categories of potential interest to our clients.

The database contains more than 500,000 unique retail locations throughout the United States and Canada. ReCAP focuses not just on major chains, but also includes many smaller chains of regional importance. It offers unparalleled commercial marketing information that is all the more accurate due to our detailed data collection and cleansing methodologies.

Developed from multiple sources, the data are verified, cleansed and integrated to create the most accurate location database anywhere. The base data can be augmented with geocodes and sales estimates. Because the ReCAP product focuses on a specific set of retail concepts, the file is more complete and accurate than other list sources.

How did we establish that a need for this product existed?
The designers of the ReCAP database have more than 60 years of experience in the retail location industry. As research professionals they knew from first-hand experience that traditional sources of this type of data were inadequate, difficult to work with, and incomplete. Their experience with other products in the marketplace convinced them that there were better methods to identify duplicate records and superfluous data, and ensure complete location coverage.

History of development
The information in the ReCAP databases is obtained from multiple sources and covers practically every chain retail and restaurant location throughout the United States. ReCAP compiles each source and the data are verified and checked. The input sources include, but are not limited to:
  • Business list and phone data
  • Franchise circulars
  • Business magazines, newsletters, newspapers, and other data providers
  • Yellow pages and white pages
  • Annual reports, 10Ks and other SEC information
  • Internet chain directories
  • Airport directories
  • Postal Service information
  • Federal, state and municipal government data
The file output put looks like the following.

(Click for larger image)

Or on a map like this.

(Click for larger image)

The methodology and the approach to ReCAP development
One of the processes we use is that of spatial de-duping. We have established a set of rules based on the retailer that identifies sister stores within a specified distance of one another. We know, for example, that there cannot be two Wal-Mart stores within 1⁄2 mile of one another. If we find two stores within 1⁄2 mile of each other, we tag them for later evaluation. Obviously, this rule does not apply to Starbucks and other retailers with very close multiple locations, but it is very helpful in identifying and removing duplicate location records from the database.

Who is the target audience for this product?
The target market for these location data includes site selection professionals within the retail community, modeling companies that sell modeling services to retailers, manufacturing and distribution companies that sell goods and services to retailers for resale, and financial companies that trade in, advise or closely follow the retail and food industries.

What do you see for the future?
We plan to offer additional data for the existing retail and restaurant records, and to offer other location points that would be considered traffic generators, such as theatres, hotels, and other public places like museums and stadiums.

Published Thursday, September 7th, 2006

Written by Brad Shelton

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