Regional grocery chains Niemann Foods and Woodman's Markets have rolled out beacons as tests give way to larger implementation.
Niemann Foods has installed a beacon marketing platform by analytics company Birdzi in eight of its County Market stores and plans to expand to all 45 of its County Market locations in Iowa, Illinois and Missouri in the coming months.
Niemann introduced a shopping app in February through which the beacons can communicate directly to shoppers' mobile devices. There is a list-building function that integrates with beacons' way-finding capabilities to help shoppers find items while in stores.
The My Country Market app also includes special offers and stored information from a customer's loyalty card.
Woodman's Foods is expanding its program to 15 stores following a successful pilot in one location in 2014.
Grocery represents possibly the greatest opportunity for location-based marketing in all of retail. The frequency of trips, share of household budget and price sensitivity all combine to make the channel ripe for new means of messaging.
"Supermarkets represent ideal environments for iBeacon tech because of the ability to use the technology to improve the shopping experience for the customer," Gary Hawkins, executive director at Birdzi, told Mobile Commerce Daily. "The typical supermarket has 40,000 sku's and often has thousands of products on sale at a given time."
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