If you want to stay abreast with the ongoing developments in BLE Beacons, stay tuned to our Track “Beacons”. You might have already heard about big players like Apple, PayPal and Qualcomm going after Beacons related hardware and software. Earlier this year, a new kind of ad campaign emerged during the NFL Super Bowl in U.S. where personalized messages were sent to greet fans in close proximity to stadiums by using the beacon technology. As per a report from Patently Apple, 82% of the iOS devices are already beacon ready while Google is giving support to beacons in its latest version of the Android platform. These developments open up limitless possibilities for developers and service providers to build apps and solutions for retailers. And some retailers are becoming early adopters.
1) Parallel 6 is a Beacons based platform provider
Parallel 6 Inc. is a mobile technology and digital marketing firm and also creator of the Captive Reach Enterprise Mobile Technology Platform. The company recently integrated beacon technology as an extension to thegeolocation module in the platform. For the end user, this could mean not depending on traditional wifi based location system on devices. Clients from gaming and retail sector are currently being targeted. In the retail space, the beacon integration could find use in performing analytics on consumer behavior like finding out about the products that attract customers the most. Through use of beacons, Parallel 6 is offering a mobile engagement management platform to the clients. Using this platform, the retail clients can especially create alerts for customers in order to highlight certain products and influence customer demand. This also finds a use in readily providing payment options as alerts to the customer.
2) Total Produce is a retailer that has adopted beacons
Total Produce is European fresh produce provider. Recently the company has come up with an innovative shelf space strategy for its retail units through “SmartStands”. These are simple retail stands that can provide a customer, in close proximity, with information about the goods stacked on it. Using beacon technology, Total Produce will allow customers to use their devices to get information on stored goods or initiate runtime payment options. This would be effective tool for content delivery to prospective customer. Along with beacons, Total Produce is also considering use of NFC or QR codes to drive sale of its products.
3) Suja is a merchant that has adopted beacons
At the 2014 NRF Big Show, a rollout of beacon technology for Suja Juice was announced. The solution involves delivery of relevant information and alerts in highly personalized manner to customers in close proximity of Suja products. Total Communicators Solutions Inc., a mobile brand management firm, developed the Spark Compass app for Suja Juice products. The app uses the Gimbal beacon platform developed by Qualcomm Retail Solutions Inc. Whole Foods Market, a participating retailer in this initiative, leverages the use of beacon technology to attract customers towards Suja products. It can be expected that product specific payment notifications can be included in the app in future.
4) Tesco UK is a retailer that has adopted beacons
The British retailer is piloting Apple’s iBeacon technology at its Chelmsford store. Tesco has developed a MyStore app, still in beta phase, to leverage the beacon technology.
The current goal involves sending out marketing messages to specific customers based on their past shopping experiences. Tesco also wishes to bring vouchering effort into beacon initiatives for a more personalized shopping experience. Tesco can use the app to provide alerts to its customers as soon they enter the store. The app can further be integrated with payment initiation feature and can be used in Tesco large network of retail outlets.
5) Swirl Networks is a Beacons based platform provider
Swirl Networks Inc., is a technology firm helping retailers using mobile as an influencer for enhanced customer experience in retail stores. Swirl has developed SecureCast beacons as part of its In-Store Mobile Marketing Platform in order to deliver personalized alerts and content to shoppers based on their location in retails stores itself. These beacons are self-contained battery powered devices that can work across Android and Apple smartphones. Simultaneously, retailers are provided with an end-to-end solution for managing campaigns in order to enhance communication with prospect customer. Swirl also piloted a marketing program for a number of fashion retailers like Alex &Ani, Kenneth Cole and Timberland. Swirl’s platform is powered by Bluetooth Low Energy positioning beacons for real time precise location detection.
GPShopper develops mobile solutions for major brands and retailers to drive sales and increase customer engagement. GPShopper launched Beacons, based on Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), to offer affordable in-store location services. These beacons are also compatible with the Apple’s iBeacon framework. The solution provides location interactivity and messaging even in areas of poor mobile reception. Beacons can be used for in-aisle promotional targeting, entry/exit messaging, cash-wrap notiications as well as analytics at store level. This is made possible through its award-winning mobile platform enabled with a robust reporting and content management system thus providing a complete ene-to-end mobile marketing solution. GPShopper also provides an SDK to retailers and brands, already having a mobile application, in order to integrate the Beacon management features.