Geotriggered notifications allow retailers to start ‘tailored conversation’ with consumers
Doesn’t bombard shoppers with random promo material at inappropriate time or place
REDLANDS, California-based Esri Inc has rolled out its geographic information system (GIS) technology in Malaysia, declaring it would ‘geotrigger’ an e-shopping revolution in the country.
The latest solution from Esri, formerly Environmental Systems Research Institute, would enable retailers to place an invisible perimeter – known as a geo-fence – around a storefront, triggering push notifications to customers’ smartphones when they cross the boundary.
Personalised special offers – promotions, time-sensitive discounts or loyalty bonuses – will be delivered directly to the customers’ smartphones to attract them into the sender’s store, Esri said in a statement.
Esri Malaysia chief executive officer Lai Chee Siew said the geotriggered notifications would allow retailers to start a “tailored conversation” with consumers at crucial moments during their shopping experience.
“Unlike SMS or email campaigns, the technology doesn’t bombard shoppers with random promotional material at an inappropriate time or place.
“Instead, by taking advantage of a smartphone’s GPS (global positioning system) features, GIS technology can provide retailers with precise details of customers’ movements in and around their business,” he added.
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Esri cited a recent Nielsen-PayPal joint study which reported nearly 50% of Malaysia’s e-commerce market – worth RM 3.65 billion (US$1.15 billion) – was generated from mobile-related sales.
This figure is projected to reach 59.6% by 2015, Esri said.
The report noted the country’s strong increase in smartphone users, which is now estimated to be more than 10 million, as the key driver for growth in mobile commerce.
Lai said that introducing geotrigger technology early would give Malaysian retailers time to consolidate customer loyalty ahead of big sales events such as the 1Malaysia Mega Sale Carnival, and 1Malaysia Year End sale.
“Early adoption of GIS technology will give established local businesses an edge over incoming retail juggernauts by enabling them to provide superior, personalised customer service,” he claimed.
”As with many of the standing loyalty schemes, participation to receive geotrigger updates is voluntary, with consumers needing to ‘opt-in’ to receive the offers.
“It is an equal exchange – customers are prepared to provide some personal information, such as their location and shopping preferences, in return for special offers or higher quality service from the retailers,” he added.
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