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How Businesses Can Make the Most of Location-Based Technology

By
Derek Walter
,
business.com writer
|
May 01, 2018
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See smart and successful ways businesses are using location-based tech.

Location-based technology innovates how businesses can really enjoy the impact of the mobile revolution. By tapping into such tools as GPS, beacons and augmented reality, a company can get more exact data and better communicate with team members with superior information.

Here's a look at some of the most successful ways location-based technology is being put to use.

Time and attendance software

Back in the dark ages, people had to slip a punch card into a machine and stamp it when they were arriving at and leaving work. It's the origin of the term "punch the clock."

Fast-forward to superior methods. One example is Virtual TimeClock, which allows employees to clock in from their computers, using time and location to keep track of when everyone is at work. There are multiple other systems like this to explore. [Interested in time and attendance software? Check out our best picks.]

Mobile marketing

Location is invaluable in mobile marketing. Businesses can hone in on leads and better connect with their customers by using the data from smartphones and tablets. Many companies are turning to Bluetooth low-energy beacons to transmit information to shoppers, offer deals and provide other helpful information. Apple's iBeacon and Google's Eddystone are among the most popular platforms, with the latter accessible on both Android and iOS devices.

While pinging shoppers directly is certainly helpful, there are other ways that mobile marketers can take advantage of such technology. It doesn't require the purchase of beacons; using location provided by a mobile device alone can be valuable, as users may respond to push alerts or advertisements. Location data has quickly become an essential part of any marketing strategy, and it can yield great insights for giving customers what they're looking for.

Security

Location-based technology comes with some security trade-offs. Beacons, for example, can be a tremendous asset for mobile marketers, but devices may often share data with third parties, which has drawn the ire of consumers and been one of the issues behind the push for the EU's General Data Protection Regulation.

However, location-based technology can also enhance security. It enables companies to better authenticate user information and prevent fraud. The key is to examine how location is being used in specific marketing technology applications deployed by your team and what threats you need to mitigate.

Video surveillance

Many businesses have enhanced their security and customer service efforts using video. It's a popular area, as evidenced by Amazon's snap-up of Ring. Businesses will be smart to follow the consumer market here, as video can be deployed with much less cost and more data collection than in the past.

At issue is the value it brings. If it can reduce theft or help your team better assist customers, the investment may be worth it. As with all such technology in this space, balancing the goals of any rollout with the resources for using such data is essential.

Derek Walter
Derek Walter
Derek Walter is the founder of Walter Media, which offers writing and content strategy services. He is also the author of Learning MIT App Inventor: A Hands-On Guide to Building Your Own Android Apps.
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