Beaconing at retail is poised for explosive growth.
More than a million beacons were shipped last year and now many more are on the way, based on a new global beacon study.
Within five years, beacon shipments will easily top 400 million, according to ABI Research.
Having a million beacons shipping last year doesn’t mean all of them were deployed, since many retailers have been experimenting in advance of large-scale launches.
I caught up with Patrick Connolly, the principal analyst on the ABI Research report, who said that retailer use of beacons for the next year is at the hockey stick breaking point.
“Retail is on the cusp,” said Connolly. “Then there will be hundreds of millions of units shipped. Retail still has a huge potential for growth, particularly in advertising,” Connolly said. “But it is more longer term.”
Revenue from beacons being sold is projected to pass $1 billion, and that’s just for the beacons.
With well over a million beacons floating around, many are going to be in stores.
The next step is to work out the best uses for them.
If nothing else, retailers at least will be able to locate some of the shoppers in their stores and then figure out the best way to serve them based on where they are.