The Bluetooth beacon market is an innovative technology that is currently growing due to its interesting applications like indoor navigation and contactless payment. Since its conception in 2013, various marketing agencies and retail businesses along with management organizations are trying to optimize the usage of beacons in retail. Beacons are widely used to provide better customer experience, enhanced shopping experience, customer intelligence and provide real time updates to customers. Bluetooth beacons work best with proximity marketing techniques and is currently used as a marketing tools by major brands like Walmart, Mc Donald’s, Amazon, Moss Bros and Woolworths to name
The Bluetooth beacon market is an innovative technology that is currently growing due to its interesting applications like indoor navigation and contactless payment. Since its conception in 2013, various marketing agencies and retail businesses along with management organizations are trying to optimize the usage of beacons in retail. Beacons are widely used to provide better customer experience, enhanced shopping experience, customer intelligence and provide real time updates to customers. Bluetooth beacons work best with proximity marketing techniques and is currently used as a marketing tools by major brands like Walmart, Mc Donald’s, Amazon, Moss Bros and Woolworths to name a few.
Introduction to Bluetooth Beacons
Bluetooth beacons are technical devices used for transmitting messages to connected smart devices. The Bluetooth works along with proximity marketing, applications and customer relationship management (CRM) systems. The beacons are mounted at multiple locations across the store, restaurant, office, travel hubs, and other such locations. A Bluetooth beacon is typically a transmitter which sends promotional advertisement content to connected smart devices. These are signals which are have a unique ID, this when received by the smart device is forwarded to cloud server. The cloud server then intercepts actions assigned to unique id and execute the action/task assigned to the unique id. This work along with a CRM system which has customer data stored in it. The CRM allows custom notifications based on previous purchases and time spend in the store by the user.
Retail, Beacon Technology and Growth
The importance of customer experience and giving users an amazing digital experience is known by all. When it comes to ecommerce artificial intelligence makes it possible by tracking the browsing history and the clicks. However, this is difficult for retail outlets and shops which are located across various shopping malls. The retail outlets relay on customer data maintained in store and the billing history at the various bill counters.
Beacon technology along with location based CRM system together create an effective customer royalty program. They connect the CRM and Point of Sales (POS) system to improve the sales and create brand royalty among the users. The system analysis based on previous purchases and sends your smart device a notification about offers. However here the constraint is that the device should be near the store and should have subscribed for push notifications.
The beacon technology empowers the campaign administrators to send contextual and personalized messages in the form of promotional advertisements, that too in real-time. Research shows out of the normal promotional content shared on devices, 91% of the messages are responded too if they are real time and when you are in the proximity of the store. The conclusion being people like to be informed about offers, coupons and other discounts but not just random one. Promotional content that is personal, and informs about offers and discounts on their favorite shampoo or soap or clothing brand is what customer want. This is what beacon technology allows retailer to achieve.
Initially retailers did wonder about consumer reaction on sharing their information at open platforms. The concept of keeping your Bluetooth “ON” always was a concern. However, soon researches and surveys indicated that buyers are fine with sharing the location, if they are getting information about discounts and promotions.
Bluetooth Beacons are being used across various industries like retails, food and beverages, Travel hubs and offices. We would like to share some user cases in the retail and food and beverage industry segments. These cases would allow you to understand how the use of Beacon Bluetooth have helped in the growth of the company.
Beacons in Retail stores
Walmart the leading multinational American Corporation which has many supermarkets, hypermarkets, departmental stores and various grocery stores across the globe. Walmart is also known as the first marketplace system that launched ecommerce in the year of 2009. Walmart installed Bluetooth beacons all across the stores at strategic locations.
The Bluetooth beacons are programmed to identify customers and share promotional messages to them. To understand it better let’s take an example of a regular customer frequently visiting Walmart. You have activated for push notifications, and hence your information like details and shopping history is recorded in the system. When you visit the Walmart, the Bluetooth beacon identifies your smart device and sends notifications about the offers based on past purchases. To simplify it further, it will give you offers on your favorite personal care brand or maybe the cheese that you bought last.
This actually improved the customer experience and helped giving the personal touch to consumers and increase the brand loyalty. Further, with the help of using LED bulbs that had beacon installed within it the company was able to save the installation cost. Thus, leading to increased revenue and sales for the superstore.
Beacons in Restaurant’s
Today, almost everyone refers to a mobile device before going to a restaurant, from selection to menu and booking of tables. With the help of beacons the customer experience is enhanced. It started in the year of 2014 when the leading hospitality giants started using Beacons to give offers to their guests. However, in 2017 there was a huge shift and many restaurants started using them. Beacons work without any application, all it needs to transmit information is to have a Bluetooth enabled smart device. Some of the other uses and benefits of beacons are:
This has further helped the restaurants to create a loyal clientele who prefer visiting the restaurant frequently.
Bluetooth beacons are having a positive impact on the retail and food and beverage industry sectors. Currently, when people are more inclined towards ecommerce for shopping and home delivery as a substitute for cooking, Beacons are expected to give the personal connection to these growing industry segments. At the same time, it is helping the retailers to provide the personal touch and attention to the customers.