Forbes just published an article outlining 7 Ways Mobile Will Change Business in 2014. The stats in the article tell us that mobile Internet use is at an all-time high with 63 percent of all cell phone owners admitting they use those devices to go online and the number of consumers who say they primarily use cell phones for Internet access up to 21 percent.
Couple those figures with the fact that almost one fifth (19 percent) of the world's six billion mobile users are already using location based services and, as reported in a Millward Brown survey, 62 percent of people who are not currently using LBS are interested in using the services, and it's clear that the most successful mobile strategies of 2014 will be location-centric.
Mobile Location should be added to each of the 7 steps Forbes suggest businesses should take to prepare for this “increasingly-mobile world” to make them more effective, more efficient and more profitable:
1. BYOD Security
Location technology helps companies to embrace BYOD and minimize the associated risks. Location can be used as an additional layer of authentication, allowing specific employees access to specific information while in specific areas. This prevents employees from browsing confidential information in public places where the information can be at risk. It also prevents any threats from the information getting into the wrong hands if a device is misplace or stolen.
2. Constantly Connected
As the line between work and personal continues to blur with personal devices being used for work purposes and vice versa, companies can use location to help maximize efficiency and accountability. By enabling a Geofence around an office or meeting site, on-time arrival of employees can be tracked. Notifications can also be enabled to let you know when your employee has reached their destination. These features help ensure that even while using their own devices, your employees are as efficient and accountable as possible.
Mobile employees can be difficult to track and manage. Location data enables effective mobile workforce management allowing companies to track their drivers' locations in real time. When employees know that their location is transparent, they are more likely to successfully manage their schedule and reach daily goals. According to an Aberdeen Group study, after a location tracking system is in place, the average business experiences a 23% increase in service calls completed per day per technician, a 12.2% increase in service profitability, and a 46% increase in on time performance. And all of this was accomplished while reducing costs.
3. More Cloud Apps
As solutions like Office 365 become more prevalent, employers will become less reliant on tech support personnel to install and troubleshoot the software. Location-as-a-Service (LaaS) platforms offer a compatible way to incorporate location with no app to download so it works on all devices, not just smartphones. Mobile location can be incorporated into your existing tools and platforms as a raw data feed to realize immediate ROI with no CAPEX.
4. Mobile-Based Marketing
Location provides a highly effective way to send locally-targeted, relevant content to your customers at times that most benefit your business. Run a happy-hour? You only need to look up the location of your customers and send them a promotional message once a day to drive traffic. Sales slow between 10-11am? Look up the location of all customers in the area at 9.30am and send them a coupon to redeem when they buy something in (what used to be) that slow hour.
5. Apps for Everything
Location is one of the main enablers that deliver services to users based on their context and, Gartner expects the total user base of consumer LBS to reach 1.4 billion users by 2014. Gartner analysts believe context-aware services are a key trend for mobile apps, and location is a key enabler of that.
6. Mobile Wallet
Sixty-one percent of US consumers believe that smartphone payments will eventually replace credit card payments for most purchases at stores. Use mobile location to verify customer transaction is initiated within the actual proximity of the mobile phone. To be used for both Bank Apps and Mobile Web.
7. In-Store Mobile Use
WiFi and Bluetooth beacons are being used by retailers and brands to alert campaigns (or mobile applications) of the phone's proximity to a key location that defines “intent” i.e. near a display end-cap indicates consideration of a product, near a cash register indicates a purchase decision, etc. This use of indoor location drives up redemption and revenues.
Location gives you a new data point for analyzing customer behavior. The key is to make sure you turn that information into intelligence to inform your business decisions.