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Everything you may what to know about Beacons Increasingly, retailers are looking to beacons to enhance the instore shopping experience while simultaneously bridging their physical and online experiences. These Bluetooth-enabled devices are being installed in an increased number of stores. Even with the deluge of media and retailer interest, beacons are still in their comparative infancy and there’s little clear data yet showing the difference they make on in-store sales. So what are beacons, and what can they realistically offer retailers and their customers? Beacons are small devices that uses a type of radio signal (Bluetooth Low Energy) to repeatedly announce their presence to anybody in the area that cares to listen. They don’t receive anything, they just send out their small signal over and over again so that people know they’re there. A basic beacon packet comprises a UUID, a major and minor as well as a transmission strength indicator. These aspects allow the detecting device to identify exactly which beacon they’re detecting, and approximately how far away it is. Beacons can be detected by nearby smartphones and other mobile devices which are Bluetooth enabled. Then when the device has the appropriate associated retail store app installed it will be able to receive personalized media such as ads, coupons or supplementary product information to enhance the shopping experience. They can also be used as point-ofsale systems and to collect

information on those consumers — particularly how consumers manoeuvre through stores. So should customers be excited about them? Depends on the customer’s taste for advertising. Research has shown that people are typically averse to mobile advertising, but it seems consumers are open to mobile ads as long as they are relevant to time, place and activity. Beacons allow for content to be delivered on an incredibly precise scale, but it’s still a fine line between annoyance and utility. If a message is about something that’s not of interest, potential consumers are likely to turn off the App. What are the benefits for retailers? The projected benefits are threefold: the ability to message consumers while they’re in store, probably equally or more

importantly the ability to collect consumer data and thirdly, payments. Beacons can enable your customers to pay for products on their smartphones through a digital wallet. The process is almost the same as completing a check-out in regular e-commerce and could be a crucial way of engaging with millennials who are used to shopping on-line. Retailers believe that pushing ads and coupons to consumers while they’re perusing the aisles will induce them to buy and therefore combat “show rooming,” i.e., the consumer practice of researching products in stores only to buy them later off an e-commerce platforms like Amazon. What are the potential advertising uses? Beacons allow stores to potentially create their own instore advertising networks. An

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Infinity April 2016  

The latest edition of ‘Infinity’ our specialist digital and ecommerce and all aspects of digital commerce. Infinity is designed for both mul...

Infinity April 2016  

The latest edition of ‘Infinity’ our specialist digital and ecommerce and all aspects of digital commerce. Infinity is designed for both mul...

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