Target, the nation’s most innovative retailer, will start testing beacon technology in 50 of its stores nationwide. With beacon technology, the company says it will be able to send information about deals as well as recommendations directly to consumers’ smartphones, provided they opt in to receive these alerts.
According to TechCrunch the beacon technology will initially work with those users who have the latest version of the Target iPhone app installed on their phones and have Bluetooth turned on.
The app will then prompt customers to “opt in” to share their location with the retailer while in the store, and allow it to send push notifications to their phones. The company says that it will limit these notifications, so as not to overwhelm customers with alerts. There will only be two push notifications sent per shopping trip.
The recommendations, meanwhile, may appear both as push alerts as well as in-app updates on the Target app’s “Target Run” page, which is designed like a social media news feed offering deals, product picks, top-pinned items from Pinterest, and more.
TC says Target is initially testing the technology in 50 stores, in Chicago, Denver, Minneapolis, New York City, Pittsburgh, Portland, San Francisco and Seattle. The stores were chosen because they represented a good cross-section of stores in various markets, Target tells us. It will then continue to adapt and enhance the service based on consumer feedback and other data, and roll it out “broadly” to other stores later in the year, Target says.
Maybe a nationwide rollout by Christmas. Android support is also in the works.
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