Beacon Adoption Remains Lukewarm

We talk a lot about the importance of personalization especially in-store. The use of beacon technology provides personalized experiences in-store with targeted promotions and content. eMarketer reported on what retailers are doing with beacon technology and why some are not implementing in their systems

eMarketer — Around one in three retailers worldwide reported “some likelihood” of implementing beacons in stores at an undetermined time, based on April 2015 polling by Lightspeed. That doesn’t exactly sound like a ringing endorsement for the new technology.

Areas Where Retailers* Worldwide Plan to Allocate Their Technology Budget, April 2015 (% of respondents)

It’s still early days for beacons, even though it has already been two years since Apple launched iBeacon. Tepid consumer interest has combined with experimental retail implementations, and the total seems to be less than the sum of its parts.

Retailers remain optimistic, however. Retail Systems Research (RSR) found in August 2015 that though just 17% of retailers worldwide had implemented beacons so far, reporting satisfaction with the result, 55% of respondents thought beacons were highly valuable—suggesting they might invest sometime soon. More respondents said beacons were a high-value internet of things (IoT) implementation than any other option—though beacons were not yet the most commonly implemented.

According to RetailMeNot, retailers in the US may be ahead of those in Western Europe when it comes to beacons. In May 2015, 9% of US respondents said they had implemented beacons or another type of in-store transmitter. In France, Germany, the Netherlands and the UK, the share fell to 3%.

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