Niemann Foods, Inc. (NFI) is a company headquartered in Quincy, Illinois that owns and operates over 100 supermarkets, convenience, pet and hardware stores mostly under the County Market, County Market Express, Harvest Market, ACE Hardware, Pet Supplies Plus, Pick-A-Dilly and Save-A-Lot banners in Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri.
Quincy is the first independent supermarket chain in the country to use the technology in all of its stores, including the Sterling and Dixon sites. It is using iBeacon technology as an interactive experience between the grocer and its shoppers.
The beacon technology itself has been helping a lot of retail industries to engage their customer. Their features include contextual mobile advertising, analyze customer behavior, tracking, and enhance shopping experience.
The myCountyMarket app is available for Apple and Android smartphones. The app allows County Market to send personalized offers, location-specific coupons, in-store maps, and sharable shopping lists – all while the customer is still in the store.
Shoppers can visit the bakery and get a $1 coupon for cookies, or head to the dairy cases and immediately receive a reminder of a great deal on coffee creamer. The app also has an in-store map to help shoppers save time. The map not only locates products, it allows shoppers to create and share shopping lists, and sort lists by aisle.
By adding their Max Card number to the app profile, shoppers will receive personalized ad fliers, highlighting sale items specific to their shopping habits. A smartphone camera allows shoppers, from the store or at home, to check if a particular item is on sale by scanning the bar code.
The actual iBeacons, which use Bluetooth Low Energy, are about the size of a quarter, and they are installed at various places within the store. When users download the app and register, they opt in to the location-based services. Before launching the app in all of its stores, Niemann tested the system in the Springfield area for the past year.