Google announced yesterday details of their NFC Wallet and Near Field Communication Google Offers
Google Offers, launched tyesterday 26-5-2011, will provide businesses with an unique opportunity to join the Near Field Communications revolutionby implementing the technology both in-store and as part of their marketing efforts using Near Field Communication Smart Posters. Google Offers allows retailers to advertise special discounts directly to a consumer’s handset through a number of the usual Google routes such as Search, Maps and Shopper; these discount vouchers and offers can then be saved by the customer on their nfc smartphone for redemption at a later stage
Google Offers with NFC Smart Posters
Smart Posters use the same Near Field Communications Technology as Google Wallet to transfer information to a user’s nfc smartphone where it can then be stored in the same app. The data is “read” by the customer when they pass their NFC-enabled smartphone, such as the Google Nexus S 4G, over a chip embedded in the Smart Poster. The smart poster can contain any information, from discount vouchers to store directions which is then displayed within the Google Wallet app on the customer’s mobile phone.
As smartphone users become aware of NFC technology through using Google Wallet, other industries will doubtless begin adoption of similar systems for payments processing and marketing. NFC Smart Posters offer a unique opportunity to tap into the Near Field Communication hype whilst also building and extending their customer base through carefully targeted, reusable advertising.
Smart Posters also offer a number of significant benefits on top of Google Offers thanks to the more targeted nature of the medium. NFC Smart Posters work on the principle of “pull” marketing – a customer has to choose to pull the information from the Smart Tag in the poster, ensuring that they are not bombarded with irrelevant advertising messages as can be the case when relying solely on search engine results. As with native Google Offers, vouchers and information pulled from an NFC Smart Poster are also stored in the user’s Google account ready for use at a later time.
Google Offers is currently undergoing Beta trials in Portland, Oregon, before being rolled out across the US with the rest of the world to follow shortly afterwards. Retailers and brands have therefore a limited window of opportunity to begin planning and testing Near Field Communication systems for sales, marketing and payments processing if they wish to be at the forefront of the roll-out.
What’s in your Wallet?
Google Offers is part of the search giant’s latest attempts to move into the mobile payments market, under the umbrella term “Google Wallet”. Google Wallet allows users of the Google Nexus S 4G nfc smartphone to download an app from the Android Marketplace which then stores encrypted copies of the user’s credit card details securely on the handset, turning the phone into a virtual wallet. Users are then able to make wireless payments via the embedded Near Field Communications system without having to resort to traditional payment cards or cash, by simply waving their smartphone over the terminal at the in-store checkout.
Google’s Vice President of Mobile Payments, Osama Bedier, recently gave a demonstration of the Wallet app by purchasing a pair of American Eagle jean shorts with the encrypted credit card on his phone, and then applying a 20% discount coupon at the checkout. As he pressed his phone against the payment terminal, the transaction was processed wirelessly and his loyalty card details were updated simultaneously.
Back to the Future
As customers become more comfortable with NFC Technology to make payments and manage their loyalty scheme memberships, they will also become more aware of other NFC implementations. Near Field Communication will change the way that data is shared between customers and brands, and customers and their social circle. The use of NFC Smart Posters will become increasingly commonplace as a way of building customer relationships and helping brands spread their message to consumers in way that allows that same message to be passed on with minimum effort.
The window of opportunity to capitalise on NFC technology implementations is growing ever smaller as evidenced by the number of businesses rushing products to market. As has been the case with most technological advances, the earliest adopters reap the greatest benefits and with a system such as NFC Smart Posters which relies initially on a high degree of novelty to encourage uptake, the sooner a business launches their campaign the better the expected return.
Don’t get left behind – call Paul Lakeman at Near Field Communiction on 07797 897 614 to find out more about how Near Field Communications, Smart Posters and Google Wallet could transform your business.