Combining Beacons, Payments history, and geo location via phone should create massive opportunities for new sources of marketing and data driven sales
Beacons can be used to power indoor maps, payments services, and location-sensitive product catalogs. There are many different beacon hardware vendors and systems — including Apple's iBeacon system — but they all share some basic characteristics. Namely, they allow retailers and event organizers to efficiently communicate indoors, without a need for GPS. Beacons — low-cost devices that communicate with smartphone apps indoors — will begin exerting a significant influence on US retail sales in 2015. Beacon-influenced sales volume will ramp up quickly, as many forms of in-store marketing take up the technology, including couponing. iPhone and Android smartphones are compatible with this technology. We estimate that beacon-triggered messages could directly influence up to $4.1 billion of total US store sales this year (or .1% of sales volume at top-100 retailers). That figure will grow 10X in 2016.