GameStop Tests Beacons in-Store but with a ‘Pull’ Twist

GameStop is the latest retailer to implement beacons in-store. Supplied by Shelfbucks (which spoke at the Place Conference), the company is testing in-store marketing in its Texas stores with the expectation that it will roll beacons out to 100 stores nationally by year end. They will deliver “real-time promotions, ratings and reviews to the smartphones of consumers walking through the aisles of its shops,” according to an article in the Wall Street Journal. The twist is that the implementation will be more of a “pull” scenario than the more conventional “push” model associated with beacons. Users will be directed to signs on shelves that will offer promotions and product information when they get close enough. Technically that information will still be “pushed” to them via GameStop’s app. But they’ll have to approach the beacons, which will be clearly marked. Essentially it’s an opt-in, “pull” model not very conceptually different from scanning a QR code on in-store signage. However message delivery won’t require QR-code scanning effort by the consumer. The article also says that GameStop intends to deliver personalized promotions to in-store shoppers “based on their purchase history, titles in their product ‘wish lists’ and their game libraries.” Our surveys and those of third parties have well established the point that consumers will willingly participate in these programs if there’s transparency and a value exchange. The prospect of relevant content, reviews and promotions, in this case, will be sufficient to gain most GameStop customers’ voluntary participation and engagement.