According to a recent Business Insider report, beacons are predicted to influence up to one in every four dollars spent in retail stores by 2016. In fact, many industry experts are of the opinion that proximity marketing with beacons could be one of the most effective tools that can help businesses generate higher ROI with ease.
What is surprising is that inspite of all the hype around proximity marketing with beacons, there is very little actionable information on doing it right. This has resulted in a number of disappointing beacon trials over the past year.
If you too are facing a tough time implementing proximity marketing campaigns, then our new Ebook ‘The A to Z of Proximity Marketing with Beacons’ with a DIY Proximity Marketing worksheet will get you started in the right direction.
Another important thing to note is that, as brands & consumers informally collaborate to perfect personalization, beacon-enabled apps evolve to create new UX that will enhance consumer experience like never before.
With 22% of brands predicted to integrate beacons this year, it is critical that they experiment with new beacon UX in their efforts to convert occasional consumers or shoppers to year-round loyal consumers. In this post we will discuss 3 beacon UX strategies that brands should employ going ahead. They are:
1. Beacons that customize on-screen displays
Most retail beacon implementations of today require shoppers to interact with a mobile app. These proximity detection devices then send discounts, ads or offers to the consumer’s mobile device when he or she nears a particular product or aisle. But what happens if the consumer fails to engage with his or her phone in-store? Yes, you got it right. In such cases none of these personalized proximity marketing messages will be received by the consumer.
Image Source: sapientnitroblog.com
To solve this challenge, SapientNitro recently introduced passive beacons that tap into the mobile device in a consumer’s pocket and leverage location information along with the loyalty profile of a consumer approaching the screen. Once these beacons have tapped into a consumer’s past behaviours including his or her preferences and needs, they will accordingly personalize content on a nearby in-store screen. This novel in-store approach demonstrated at NRF Big Show earlier this month will help consumers make informed buying decisions without ever having to use their phone.
2. Beacons as bulletin boards, pins
While most of the earlier beacon-based experiences were designed to work by creating digital artefacts such as coupons that are tied to a very specific location or product, brands now have started locking digital pieces of content to a specific place or product as well. Here are some examples on how beacons can be used as pins or bulletin boards across various verticals:
– Museums: Beacons can allow visitors to leave comment attached to certain artifacts on display, browseable by other visitors in the vicinity.
– Malls: Beacons can be used to to enable shoppers to upvote or downvote mall experiences based on the facilities provided. This will encourage shoppers to interact with the mall on a digital level and serve as a good feedback tool for malls.
– Universities: Beacon can be used to post announcements which would then act as a digital bulletin board for the students.
– Retail: Shoppers can use beacons to tag items for a friend who could then ‘find’ the shelf (or beacon) where you left the note the next time they’re in the store.
3. Beacons that are prominently visible to users
Contrary to how beacons are currently installed far from the shoppers’ view at the store entrance or on the ceiling of a particular section, brands have started installing beacons more prominently at the consumer facing racks. For example, this new kind of UX, where the consumer essentially asks to be beaconed, is being tested in many GameStop stores across New York.
The idea behind this is that, instead of pushing messages to game shoppers based on their location in-store, GameStop wants its shoppers to bring their phone near the beacon, if they want additional product information. On bringing their mobile device near the beacon on the rack, the proximity-detection device will trigger the relevant messaging in the GameStop app.
With brands predicted to risk a whopping 313% drop in app usage along with every other push notification that is delivered per store visit, these UX-enhancing strategies will help brands avoid blanket marketing.
Going ahead we will definitely see developers create a new generation of smart, contextual and device-driven experiences using beacons. What kinds of beacon-based experiences do you expect to see in the year ahead? Let us know in the comments.
If you are planning a beacon pilot, take a look at Beaconstac, that includes everything you need to get started. Using Beaconstac you can set up your own campaign, without a developer’s help!