Mobile Commerce Insider Featured Article

March 05, 2014

PowaTag Offers Retailers a Chance to Promote Mobile Impulse Buying

You see something in the shop window as you walk by, and you know you need it now. It’s an urge to buy a product that makes your fingers itch with desire.

Hoping to harness that impulse for retailers, Powa Technologies has introduced a new app that uses mobile technology to let people buy what they see with the click of a button. Called PowaTag, the new app uses QR codes, audio watermarks or Bluetooth geo-location to pull up a product and purchase it with a touch on the screen.

The company’s strategy is to bridge the gap between impulse and sale—eliminating the need for a store to be open or a customer to find a website. The approach works for both physical and digital locations, which means a customer can walk down the street, shop in a store, listen to the radio, watch a television show or surf the net when the advertisement pops up. A quick scan of the item or a swipe on the screen, and a consumer can purchase the item right from their mobile device.

"Retailers can no longer afford to think in terms of online verses offline,” explained Dan Wagner, CEO of Powa Technologies Group. “They must seriously rethink how they connect in-store and online strategies to provide the agility and innovation needed to enable customers to buy whenever and wherever they may be, when they are at that critical buying-decision moment."

It’s an ambitious undertaking that has attracted both financial backing and support from retailers, including big brands such as Reebok, Quiksilver and Harry & David.

The tracking technology is already available on the mobile device. Consumers can download the PowaTag app, which is available from Google Play and the Apple AppStore.

Retailers sign up with Powa Technologies and then integrate the sensors that will trigger the app. However, in many cases, these elements are part of their current marketing plans—such as QR codes. Other methods require some investment in minor hardware, such as Bluetooth beacons placed strategically so shoppers can receive messages containing special offers as they approach a location.

In exchange, however, retailers collect valuable data on a participating customer's shopping habits and personal preferences are as soon as they walk through the door. The benefits work both ways, Wagner said.

“Our hybrid combination of technologies which include Bluetooth Beacons, instant payment authentication, and mobility enable retailers to have a richer engagement with their customers and understand their needs and cater for them in a more focused way,” Wagner said. “Consumers also benefit from having a vastly improved shopping experience.”

PowaTag is also offering its services to charities free of charge and reportedly has signed up more than 35 of the world's largest charitable organizations. Of particular interest to not-for-profits, the service's audio capabilities enables users can donate to TV and radio ads instantly.




Edited by Cassandra Tucker




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