Bluetooth Beacons
August 26, 2015

What are Bluetooth Beacons?

Written By Rebecca Larkin

These days, everything is becoming more connected and more interactive. Whether we’re setting off to work or popping to the shops, we rarely leave the house without our smartphones meaning the real, non-touchscreen world has to try a little harder to grab our attention. That’s where Bluetooth Beacons come in.

These handy little Beacons have a range of uses, from close-range navigation to proximity marketing. Bluetooth Beacons are the next big thing in retail, and will help to bridge the gap between retailers and their customers.

The technology is a little fresh, Beacons haven’t been applied en masse yet and there’s still some confusion surrounding their purpose and how they operate. With this in mind, we’re going to walk you through the essentials of Beacons technology, and show you how exactly they could benefit retailers.

How do Beacons work?

In technical terms Beacons are small devices with an ARM processor and a Bluetooth module which broadcasts various signals and connects with a compatible mobile app to display a specific message or action.

Beacons push specific messages to smartphones with the corresponding app within the proximity of the Beacon itself using Bluetooth technology. For retailers this means a direct connection with customers via their phones, and for customers it’s an instant notification centre where they can connect and interact with a shop or brand.

What are their best uses?

We know that Beacons sound like a complicated system to start and maintain, but trust us, the potential is massive. In retail there’s a whole host of things you could use Beacons for, and this infographic shows a basic retail journey range of our favourite uses.

Bluetooth Beacons Retail Journey Infographic

With Beacons you can build new mobile interactions, from proximity marketing and contactless payments to footfall count and in-venue analytics. Furthermore, Beacons can take customers on a journey; location mapping is a key feature of making retail beacons a success. Give you customers a map to guide them, push the latest offers, or show them other products, all by using Beacons to make sure that your visitors, customers, and users receive the right messaging at the right time, in the right place.

Imagine entering a shopping centre, knowing exactly where you need to go, whether what you have is in stock, and getting an offer alert straight to your phone, sounds pretty useful right?

Of course Beacons aren’t solely for retail, we expect they’ll soon be used everywhere from airports to museums to hospitals. If you want to find out more about Beacons including how they work, and our Beacons services give us a call or drop us an email.