Depending on how tuned in you are to the latest technology, you’re likely familiar with iBeacons. For the savviest shoppers, iBeacons deliver exclusive promotions, rewards and discounts directly to your phone in real time, while you browse participating stores. The technology has surfaced through marketing platforms like the locally based Swirl and the Silicon Valley-based shopkick, which was recently rolled out in every Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s location in the US.
Shopkick was founded as a shopping tool in 2010, but didn’t roll out its end-to-end iBeacon technology, shopBeacon, until earlier this year. As a result (and across the board for other platforms, as well), the device is still being tested, updated and improved upon as shopkick works with its partners, which includes not only Macy’s, Inc. but American Eagle, Target, Best Buy, Old Navy and more. A study was recently performed by beacon platform inMarket to learn more about iBeacons, and they found that while the technology can be very effective when implemented properly, over saturation and irrelevant messages can be “disastrous” for a brand.
Now, we have more evidence as to how iBeacons impact the retail market. On Wednesday, for the first time since its launch, shopkick released a report revealing the revenue that the app has earned for its retail partners. According to the release, shopkick has driven $1 billion in revenue for its partners since 2010, with over half of that revenue earned in the past 12 months, when shopBeacon was rolled out. The app, which was recently acquired by South Korea-based mobile and commerce company SK Planet, currently has 7,500 live shopBeacon devices throughout 3,000 stores that send promotions to customers as they shop. This network of beacon devices, according to shopkick, is 20 times larger than the next largest iBeacon competitor.
That $1 billion revenue translates to 50 million verified store walk-ins (as in, customers were compelled to visit a store after receiving a beacon notification), 100 million product scans (which can unlock rewards when performed by customers) and, finally, millions of transactions.
Shopkick recruited American Eagle Outfitters, its inaugural retail partner, to look further into the shopBeacon success. According to the report, customers using shopkick received an iBeacon message as they walked in the store that offered a small incentive for visiting the fitting room. At the end of the day, the percentage of shopkick users who visited the fitting room was more than double that of the percentage of non-shopkick users.
American Eagle Outfitters’ Chief Digital Officer Joe Megibow said in the release:
We’ve found that focusing on the customer and creating engaging experiences is core to customer satisfaction, and that translates into better sales. So we were very excited about these results from shopkick’s shopBeacon experiment … We found that being able to offer small, timely rewards for trying on clothes dramatically impacted behavior, and we love creating opportunities for our customers to experience our clothes and our brand.
As of now, and especially in light of shopkick’s report, iBeacon technology shows no sign of stopping, as offline, brick and mortar retailers compete in a digitally driven market.
Image via Shopkick