Rite Aid Will Deploy Thousands Of Beacons To Beam Deals At Shoppers

(Jeepers Media)

(Jeepers Media)

In-store beacons are low-power Bluetooth devices that let stores or brands push promotions out to customers smartphones. They only work when the shopper has opted in by installing an app. Do you really want your favorite shampoo brand beaming coupons at you every time you walk by a shelf? They haven’t really caught on, but Rite Aid is deploying them in 4,500 stores.

Compare that to Target, which put them in only 50 stores last year as part of a test. (Yesterday, we showed you a “smart” freezer case which is able to track how many shoppers with beacons have passed by.)

The company that provided Rite Aid with those beacons, InMarket, works to get the brand and store apps that customers already have working in real life. “Our strategy has been to build out relationships with apps that people already use, rather than try to reinvent the wheel and get people to download something new,” the company’s communications director explained to ZDNet.

Retailers find beacons exciting, because the device allows them to track shoppers’ travels through the store the same way that they might track our path through the sections of their website. It’s a way to push coupons and promotions at customers while also maybe tracking their path through the store.

This is the largest deployment of beacons in retail ever, partly because Rite Aid has such a large network of stores, and because they’re not starting with a small test market.

Rite Aid deploys proximity beacons in more than 4,500 US stores [ZDNet] (via RetailWire)