The conversation about mobile location-based marketing began in stores. Customers were entering traditional brick and mortar stores, mobile phone in hand, and comparing prices online or at competitor’s locations nearby, a practice now known as “showrooming.” Retailers had no option but to get on the defensive; especially since nearly 90% of most retailers’ revenue comes from the physical store.
As brands began to investigate monetizing location-based mobile marketing, it quickly became apparent that accessing smartphones’ innate understanding of location would be groundbreaking. By understanding a consumer’s location, brands could market to them based on context and directly drive the shopper to a brick and mortar location. But brands have overlooked a significant value to location-based marketing—the potential to understand, for the first time, what happens in brick and mortar stores. Through mobile, brands are able gather detailed, web style analytics on the physical store for the first time…ever.
With location analytics dialogue in its beginning stages, it is only appropriate to develop a guide. Here’s ours:
1. Protect users privacy.
When tapping into your customers’ location you must protect their privacy. In order to not track customers, brands can harness geofences, or virtual boundaries around physical locations. This way, they can understand when they are in relevant locations, particularly in brands’ brick and mortar stores, but not monitor shoppers 24/7.
2. Save consumers’ battery life.
Activating location-based technology only when consumers are in predetermined geofences allows brands to conserve battery life. Brands can turn on and off access to GPS—or the battery killer—by using a variety of systems that determine location. For example, if cell tower triangulation allows the mobile phone to understand when a consumer nears a geofence, GPS or Wi-Fi will activate to pinpoint specific location, saving battery life.
3. Monitor in-store engagement.
Through mobile brands can, for the first time ever, gather detailed analytics on in-store engagement. Occupancy, dwell time, and repeat visits, data that retailers have never had an opportunity to discover, are finally unveiled. By accessing consumers’ patterns in specific locations, brands can unearth valuable data on how to improve their stores.
4. Understand in-store engagement.
Once brands have an understanding of how consumers are using the store, they can detect patterns on how to improve engagement. For example, if a store in Austin receives twice as many visits but half the return visits as a store in New York, it is clear that something during the course of engagement is going poorly; whether it’s the layout, associate training, or the existence of a competitor’s store down the street.
5. Improve marketing strategy.
After a brand launches an entire omni-channel strategy and harnesses mobile to drive traffic and engage with consumers in-store, it can uncover rich analytics on the marketing process. When forming a marketing plan, brands can access analytics to test campaign messaging, whether by time of day, location or language. Analytics can also discover how shoppers engage with a product, whether they scan a barcode, share a product via social media, or use the brand’s mobile app for POS.
Kirsty Hughan is Digby‘s Marketing Manager and as such is excited by the opportunity mobile provides to finally allow for a 1:1 marketing strategy for brands. To stay in touch, you can find her on Digby’s Facebook, Twitter or the Digby Blog.