Merchants have not adopted to beacon technology as fast as expected. However, research proved that by 2018, there will be a total of 4.5 million active beacons in the US alone. At the same time, it is interesting to note that in 2015, the estimate of active beacons was just 500,000.
From 2015-2018, it is a 900% increase in beacon deployments.
This is a staggering change; given that there will be further advancements in the features, usability, implementation and affordability of beacon technology. Soon retailers will understand how much they and their customers can gain by adapting to this technology.
By integrating beacons with the electronic signage system used inside your store, you are more or less handing over your customers the remote control. That can decide their preferences of what’s showing on the screen. Empowering your customers in this manner makes them feel like the content was catered specifically to their needs and interests. Today’s consumers are fond of dynamic, interactive and visual content that is accessible on demand.
What will drive retailers to adopt to beacon technology?
It is a known fact that there is a wealth of information available at the fingertips of concerned customers. They will make use of the shop-and-compare strategy by first checking product reviews and finding better deals and discounts. Hence retailers, restaurants and those in the hospitality and entertainment industry will have no choice but to adapt to consumer strategies.
By connecting to beacon and digital signage systems, retailers can encourage the shop-and-compare strategy used by customers and provide them with information they need on the screens right in front of them. Some groups of customers rely on mobile devices as a source of entertainment while they shop. Beacon technology can cue content from mobiles directly to the LED display inside the store. This way retailer can collect data, guide shopping experiences and also provide interactive entertainment.
How to implement in-store beacon technology
Mandatory app download is one of the major drawbacks of beacon technology because consumers are more particular about the storage space on their mobiles rather than the advantages they can obtain from retail apps. While researchers are still looking into ways in which beacon integration can be done without requiring app download, there are a few strategies that retailers can use to enhance the beacon and signage experience provided to consumers:
- Retailers that have multiple branches can begin with implementing beacons at their most popular stores.
- Evaluate your existing mobile application based on entertainment and informational value, not just on revenue, retail messaging and special offers.
- Identify your content strategy. Are you looking to provide product information, comparisons of products, engaging content, information regarding the manufacturing process of the product or entertaining content? Having a clear content strategy is essential before delivering digital signage and mobile app content.
- Produce an interesting video of how in-store beacon can enhance a customer’s shopping experience and thereby encourage app download by specifying its benefits in the same video. It has been proved that location based messaging tactics are quite effective in generating ROI.