Friday, May 08, 2015

Ibeacons in Retail: Monoprix Experimenting The Topic

Ibeacons is a hyped word in the retail business right now. A lot of expectation is set in this new kind of technology allowing to provide customized marketing content to shoppers. So far, very few experimentations have been undertaken, but they start to spring up. French retailer Monoprix has recently released a new application using Ibeacons to provide customized discounts along the shoppers' paths.

22 stores will test the beacons in the Paris area. The goal is to test the technology and to better perceive the behavior of shoppers when they receive such communication. The application has been designed by Catalina which is a company specialized in the promotional coupon business. Experimentation will be processed until the month of june, to see if a broader launch will be decided.

To me, Ibeacons could be used in two specific occasions in the retail world:

  • To provide customized and premium content, in order to enhance customer experience. It could for example provide you extra information about one product or its usage. It is more a pull technique.
  • To boost sales by sending geolocalized promotions, based on the customer profile. It is in this case a push tool.
But the problem is obviously to see how privacy is dealt with both ideas. Hence, geolocalization promotion systems have already been tried in the past using for example text messages. But it has so far not been much effective. Nevertheless, it is very interesting to see how these Ibeacons will be used and what kind of results retailers will have from those experimentations.