However, the iOS and Android mechanisms are still there for more worthy applications such as visitor space usecases that need to provide location based information. For these types of application, there’s the need for good app onboarding explaining location and Bluetooth usage in order to provide the location-based information that the end-user is requiring.
LiteBeacon Proximity Marketing App provides Android app source code and server php source code to implement a proximity marketing system. It creates ad campaigns with Firebase push notifications and has a visual advert composer. Compatible with iBeacon and Eddystone.
Customers are increasingly expecting very high levels of customer service at car dealerships. This is very difficult to achieve due to the high levels of manpower needed, especially at the start and end of the day, as service staff search for customers’ cars.
On the sales side, some customers end up waiting to be seen (or leave) while others, usually millennials, expect better self-help information to better inform their choice.
There are untapped opportunities to make dealerships much more efficient and improve the customer experience through the use of technology.
Attaching beacons to cars and using apps and Bluetooth gateways solves some of the problems found in dealerships:
Finding cars – A significant amount of time can be wasted manually finding specific cars be they for sale or in for servicing. Sometimes a car might be at one of a few sites or even at a storage site. It might be in use and not be on a site. Cars sometimes block in other cars requiring extra keys to extract. Beacons attached to cars can locate them and adjacent cars in real time.
Providing Sales Information – Beacons attached to cars for sale can be used with apps to provide information and capture leads when the salesperson is busy or the dealership is closed. They provide a way for customers to continue the buying process when they have left the site and extend the showroom to their homes and workplaces. There are also opportunities to extend marketing to customers’ friends and family through social sharing.
Providing Servicing Information – Dealerships get very busy at the start and end of the day when customers drop off and pick up their vehicles. Apps and Bluetooth gateways and web sites can be used to provide automated information, based on location, as to the progress of servicing thus relieving staff of answering phone calls.
Once you have a beacon network in place collecting data you can perform more advanced analysis such as identifying cars for sale that haven’t moved for a long time, popular cars and unpopular cars. You can gather information on service time, throughput and productivity.
A little known, under-promoted use of iBeacons is with Apple Passkit. Passkit allows you to create and distribute things like coupons, boarding passes, store cards, event tickets, promotions, offers or just information that can end up in the built-in iOS Wallet app. After adding a pass into the wallet, a user can get a notification about the pass when they are near an iBeacon associated with the pass, all without installing an app. There are lots of uses particularly in retail, events and hospitality.
An important thing to realise is that the beacon doesn’t send the pass to the smartphones. They just cause the triggering. You need to provide a mechanism, usually via a web site, where users can download the pass from your web server. Your server must be secure (HTTPS) and use a SSL certificate from a known certificate authority. Self-signed certificates won’t work. You will also have to set your server to serve the application/vnd.apple.pkpass MIME type when hosting the pass file.
There’s a useful example by Tom Harrington who shows how he created a Passbook Business Card. If you are not a technical person and it all looks too complicated, PassKit Inc (nothing to do with Apple) have a platform based on Apple Wallet.
Our free EddystoneCMS currently contains 282 beacons that have had over 55,000 clicks. As with many stats in life, there’s a 20:80 ratio – about 20% of the users create most of the traffic. The larger 80% only have a few clicks and the descriptions and links show these tend to be people testing out Eddystone and/or their beacons. The remaining 20% are almost certainly making productive and profitable use of their beacons. Here are the top 10 users for inspiration: