Commentary

Beacon Data Tells When a Consumer Is Due to Shop

There’s being beaconed and then there’s using beacon data for better targeting.

The most commonly considered use for beacons is to use their locations to deliver targeted content based to the smartphone-carrying consumers who agree to accept the messaging.

Some later beacon uses involved tapping the little radio transmitters to gather smartphone information and, rather than using it for current, on-the-spot messaging, leverage it for other uses. These might include analyzing store visits or finding connections with online behaviors.

As the Internet of Things evolves, different uses for connected objects also will come to light as innovators go beyond the obvious initial uses of technology and data.

Now beacon data is being used to predict the best time and location to send an ad when the technology determines that a consumer is “due” for their next store visit.

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InMarket has been using beacons to track store visits and shopping cycles for tens of millions of shoppers who opted-in to the program to determine when consumers have the highest propensity to respond, such as when they’re due for the next shopping trip.

In testing with an un-named company over the last year, InMarket execs said retargeting at the right moment based on offline shopping behavior translated to an 8% increase in store trips and 14% increase in the amount of money spent per trip.

Perhaps even more relevant for a consumer, the consumer behavior tracking automatically skips over shoppers when they’re least receptive, such as just after a shopping trip.

As a result, consumers could receive relevant mobile ads or brand messages just before or during a shopping trip and then be ad-free just after that trip.

The InMarket proximity platform is tracking consumers in multiple categories, such as grocery, entertainment, discount and automotive.

While most consumers may never be aware of beacons, they may find themselves receiving more adds that matter at the right time.

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