Niemann Foods MaxCardIn February, Niemann Foods, operating under the County Market banner, became the first independent supermarket chain to install iBeacons in its stores to significantly enhance customer engagement. That test pilot program in eight stores, coupled with its attendant success, has now permeated to 44 County Market stores.

“We began with a pilot program in our eight Springfield-area stores in February 2015,” Nathaniel Jones, Electronic Marketing Manager at Niemann Foods, told Loyalty360. “After seeing the success and demand from customers, we decided to bring the rest of our County Market stores online this summer. The myCountyMarket app is now live in all 44 of our County Market stores.”

Just how much has customer engagement grown since County Market installed the new personalized technology?

“Shopper engagement via the app is growing at 15%-20% week over week since May,” Jones added. “In-store offer redemptions have tripled from May. In-store offers have a 600% greater open rate than mass marketed offers. So we know people are responding. And we will continue to look for new and exciting ways to add value to our customer’s journey.”

Niemann Foods has implemented the Birdzi platform in all of its stores to provide personalized digital savings and increased customer engagement for its shoppers.Niemann Foods Customer Engagement

Birdzi is a provider of location analytics and mobile applications for personalized shopper engagement. County Market is using Birdzi’s platform to deliver personalized offers, location-specific coupons, in-store maps, sharable shopping lists and more to shoppers, creating an entirely new shopping experience for its customers.

What’s more, the Birdzi platform features an in-store map that helps shoppers easily locate products in the store. Shoppers can create and share shopping lists with friends and sort shopping lists by aisle and map out their grocery trip in order to save valuable time in the store.

The platform integrates County Market’s loyalty program, the Max Card, delivering a personalized digital flyer and tips to unique customers. It allows shoppers to scan their favorite products from the comfort of their home to check for sales and promotions.

“We chose beacon technology because it offers a chance to connect with the customers in a unique way,” Jones explained. “Shoppers gets a personalized experience in the store with every visit. Receiving relevant, real-time offers is very valuable for our customers and, hopefully, we’re making grocery shopping easier.”

Jones said the customer response has been incredible.

“We’ve discovered that nearly 10% of all devices entering our major market area stores now have the app and that number is climbing every week!” he said. “People are really gravitating toward the personalized and in-store offers. The My Offers tab is the most viewed screen in the app, besides the home screen.”

Jones believes supermarkets are the best use of the beacon technology right now.

“We combine the beacons with our loyalty program, the Max Card, to avoid ‘spamming’ the customer with irrelevant messages,” Jones said. “We really want those push notifications to have merit with our customers and bring a personalized experience. You have to deliver value to your shoppers with any new retail technology venture to have a long-term impact, or it’s going to fall flat.”

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