Indoor location services have long yielded considerable value for large venues, offering their visitors and WiFi users more in-premise safety, easier navigation, and more. Such technologies are not exclusively valuable for large venues alone, however. From businesses in the hospitality industry to healthcare facilities, indoor location services have ample applications and equally plentiful potential benefits. To illustrate this, let us consolidate six ways businesses can benefit from indoor location services, accompanied by relevant case studies.
What are indoor location services?
First and foremost, let us briefly define indoor location services. Consisting of software and hardware components indoor location services allow businesses to track valuable objects and people within a given space. Their primary functions help ensure easier navigation, optimize venue safety, and guarantee asset safety from loss or theft.
The most widely used types of indoor location services include:
Through a combination of access points, a captive portal and seamless customer access journey businesses look to collect insights about their visitors to better understand who they are allowing them to personalize marketing efforts and increase return rates through improved visitor experience.
Collectively working with BLE beacons, WiFi access points, and the Earth’s geomagnetic core, large venues look to enable visitors to freely navigate to their desired destination through handheld navigation, as well as online preview directions and in-venue digital displays.
Also known as people counters, sensors provide a lot of information about how spaces are being utilized. By enabling 2D or 3D cameras to work alongside computer vision, businesses’ are enabled to assess risks before they occur (such as overcrowding). WiFi access points can also be included to provide venues with mobile ping data which shows how visitors are moving around the space.
Historically using barcodes has been the main way in which businesses have included asset tracking operationally, however, industries like healthcare have needed a more robust and insightful solution. Over time more technologies such as RFID (Radio Frequency Identification), BLE (Bluetooth Enabled), and NFC (Near-field Communication) tags have all become more popular and can fit an array of use cases. For a deeper analysis of their fundamentals and use cases, you may also consult our article on indoor location services.
How Purple sits in the indoor location services market – free report
As of February 2022, Purple has been announced as a Niche Player within Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for Indoor Location Services, which we believe demonstrates the company’s reputation as a recognized vendor for indoor location solutions.
#1 In-depth analytics
The proverbial lifeblood of all modern enterprises, analytics are a crucial component of long-term success. Leveraging WiFi access points, indoor location services yield an abundance of quantitative analytics like:
- Foot traffic analysis
- Hot spot and dwell area identification
- Other location-specific Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
Such user behavior data can offer an excellent foundation for location management and optimizations, especially with heat maps, Google Analytics, and other analytics tools. It is, of course, imperative to read the data correctly and juxtapose it with qualitative data to identify ideal adjustments.
Case study: Farmacorp
As an example of this application in action, we may cite Farmacorp, the largest pharmacy chain in Bolivia. They identified the need for deep analytics to enrich their customer profiles and gauge in-store service efficiency. Through WiFi analytics on top of their guest WiFi, they achieved:
- An 83% increase in customer data collected
- A 24-minute reduction in average waiting time
- 644% ROI through Captive Portal revenue
#2 New CRM records
Equally notable among ways businesses can benefit from indoor location services is data collection for CRM records. CRM databases serve as invaluable assets for managing customer interactions for SMBs and multinational commercial juggernauts.
Their customer data can inform virtually all touchpoints across a customer journey, from initial marketing outreach to sales pitches and from follow-up emails to post-purchase engagement and customer service. Indoor location services effectively capture customer data to fuel CRM records through registration forms and similar means.
Case study: Hudson Yards
For a notable example of this application, we may cite Hudson Yards, the largest private development in the history of North America. Through captive portals and visitor access journeys displayed across 2,000 Cisco access points, Hudson Yards offered guests a truly branded WiFi experience.
In turn, they collected 300,000 new CRM records within five months!
#3 Visitor safety and ease of navigation
Among the most famous, perhaps self-evident benefits of indoor location services are visitor safety and ease of navigation. Both are traditional benefits of wayfinding solutions and have become ever more present as the services have become digitally focussed.
Ease of navigation helps ensure a better visitor experience which enhances in-premise engagement. The ever-present factor of safety has become increasingly important post-pandemic with patients returning to healthcare venues and students back to campuses. In these contexts, contactless wayfinding technologies help highlight useful contact points for visitors and reduce congestion, respectively.
Case study: Ringlings College
The Ringling College of Art and Design campus sits on over 48 acres of land which includes more than 110 buildings, many with vast libraries. Leveraging our wayfinding solution enabled much easier navigation between buildings, across campus, and even navigating within the library drastically reducing the risk of students and visitors getting lost.
You may read about Ringlings College’s case study here.
#4 Efficiency and User Experience
Similarly, enriching visitor’s offline and online experience is another critical way businesses can benefit from indoor location services. Visitors and attendees increasingly expect rich, immersive experiences, a trend that aligns with more complex customer journeys. Last year, Statista found that “33 percent of marketers in the [US] and the [UK] spent more than half of their online marketing funds on personalization efforts” for this very reason.
Indeed, visitors may expect detailed information on areas or events, personalized splash pages, and other digital-bound conveniences. In this sense, indoor location services offer real-time data business owners may use to offer an impeccable experience and influence new revenue.
Case study: Miami HEAT
Home to Miami HEAT, American Airlines Arena hosts 80+ non-basketball events each year, including A-list concerts, family shows, national conferences, and more which has inevitably increased bandwidth demands. Fans also increasingly expected relevant information, providing the Arena the opportunity to present tailored marketing communications.
#5 Comprehensive qualitative data
Having touched on the pandemic’s effects above, it bears repeating in a different context. As COVID restrictions have varied vary and fluctuated, safety has entered the forefront of visitors’ minds and businesses must think past the pandemic and how to keep their visitors feeling safe. Their perceptions of safety can drastically affect both their in-premise behavior and overall feelings toward brands.
Hard, quantitative data can certainly help deduce such perceptions, but direct feedback offers a clear, direct overview. In this regard, businesses can benefit from indoor location services as they hone in on individual visitors and personalize their experience, based on direct feedback, effectively collecting qualitative data to inform their operational decisions.
Case study: Liverpool ONE
As a clear, notable example of this, we may cite Liverpool ONE, the largest open-air shopping center in the UK. Liverpool ONE was keenly aware of potential safety concerns and the impact they could have on repeat visits, culture, and brand image overall. Through our Microsurvey functionality on top of the insights gained through WiFi Analytics, they achieved a 97% visitor survey conversion rate! In turn, LiverpoolOne saw massive benefits including huge annual savings.
#6 More engagement
The final benefit we will cover is the increase in engagement from customers, visitors, and in some cases even staff! Indoor location services can directly enhance engagement rates and often in the right place at the right time to maximize the chances of engagement.
In addition to marketing outreach improvements through the combination of collected/existing CRM data and marketing automation, customer data collection can directly enhance in-premise experiences and drive engagement. A typical example of this may be found in rich location-specific information delivered through pages tailored to in-premise customer behavior, as well as post-visit communications that fit the visitors’ interests.
Case study: Sofology
A very notable success story of this benefit is Purple customer Sofology. The UK’s fastest-growing sofa specialist, Sofology, identified room for improvement regarding visitor engagement and influenced purchases. By utilizing data captured through our guest WiFi solution, Sofology achieved stellar results:
- An ROI of 2121% in new customer orders
- An ROI of 274% in offline-to-online store orders
- 1061% ROI in new MySofology orders
To summarize, there are numerous ways businesses can benefit from indoor location services and reap the endless benefits available. Beyond the established fundamentals of a better venue experience and safety for visitors and assets, the data collection capabilities of indoor location services present near-endless opportunities for growth.
If you want to find out more about how indoor location services can help your business perform better get in touch or download the report above!