Advantages and Disadvantages of Geofencing Applications
Geofencing in its quintessential definition is nothing but a virtual fence surrounding a geographic area. Creating such a virtual fence and further offering it as part of a mobile app will actually let you know the location of the respective app users within this virtual fence. It will also tell when the user entered or left the fence area. But how knowing the location information of users can be beneficial? To be precise there is an array of advantages related to this. Most prominent of them is the business advantage of triggering a push notification to the user.
How Geofencing works?
Geofence is set with the help of GPS technology and just as GPS Geofence is also very sensitive and can offer you exact location based information concerning the movement of the user. Such a fence can be covering any distance and diameter according to your necessity and preference. The fence can include an entire city, or you can choose to include a street just facing your business location.
Geofence can be effectively used to target customers with appropriate time specific notifications. For example a real estate app for buying and selling properties can send location based push notifications to its users whenever they came close to the area where some properties are in sale. Any type of business campaign can use Geofencing for sending a wide variety of messages to the potential customers. Typically Geofence does not always need to be created around your location. In a different way you can use this technology to the benefit of your business. For instance, if you have food joint nearby an event location you can create Geofence around the event place rather than your food joint. Doing this you can send push notifications carrying some great offers on your foodstuffs to people coming out of the event.
Advantages of Geofencing
Geofencing surely is a great technology to drive customers to your business. But sending push notifications randomly you can actually force them to inactivate the Geofencing ability in the app settings. In such cases you are likely to lose contact with customers. Geofencing should be used in a very contextual and relevant way with an objective to add value and deliver better experience.
Geofencing for customers also offers an array of benefits. A customer coming close to a business store can be notified for buying anything that is on sale with some exciting offers. This actually provides him scope to remain in touch with new offers, freebies and anything that can interest him to buy a product or two. For instance, using a booking app with Geofencing capacity a frequent traveler can actually find help from booking status notifications. So, when effectively used Geofencing can make a win-win situation for both customers and businesses.
Geofencing is also used by businesses to gather customer data to understand their buying capacity, buying motivation and buying habits better. Gathering large amount of customer data over a period of time you can be make better decisions to target customers in that location. Geofencing can be used as a great apparatus for gathering user and customer information to further process them for business analytics.
As part of enterprise apps Geofencing feature can be effective to monitor workforce movement and activities in a given locality. Through the use of Geofencing the workers movement and recess time can be monitored remotely. Geofencing can easily offer better control over transport in the time of need.
Finally, Geofencing is really great app feature that can be utilized to enhance security measures in any event or situation. Having a security app with Geofencing capability on your kid’s phone you can always keep track of his movement. Similarly at an event security personnel with this feature can easily be moved where they are needed most.
To surmise, Geofencing is a superb technology with revolutionary potential to transform so called insignificant local data concerning a person’s movement into great business intelligence, security intelligence, workforce monitoring and management, remote surveillance of transport and people, etc. Let us provide below a summary of key advantages of Geofencing technology.
- Driving customers and traffic to business.
• Engaging customers and potential buyers with the business.
• Adding value to sales process by contextually making offers and promotional freebies and gifts.
• Offering a win-win business proposition to customers with relevant push notifications.
• Gaining business intelligence with location specific data about customers.
• Monitoring and managing workforce remotely.
• Better control and tracking on-road transport.
• Far enhanced collaboration among security personnel.
• Great event management through real time location alert and data.
Disadvantages of Geofencing
No great technology ever comes without limitations. So is Geofencing. But obviously, in consideration to the wide range of benefits and utilitarian scopes, there are only few disadvantages of Geofencing.
Geofencing is a technology that requires approval or participation from the user. Naturally, if the feature is not turned on the user device it will not produce any result. The human spirit by nature is antipathetic to any monitoring kind of thing and this makes Geofencing a culprit against privacy. This results in users turning of the feature in most cases.
For producing business intelligence Geofencing is only effective when customer data from other sources are mobilized in unison. So, Geofencing is basically not a very independent technology for gaining quality business intelligence input.
Geofencing in most mobile devices take too much battery life and this makes users turn off the feature. Many users even prefer to avoid apps with Geofencing capability because of this. Furthermore, network capacity, bandwidth, device capacity and battery life remained as the constraints for this technology to function seamlessly across devices and in all situations.
Compared to emerging technologies like Beacon which gives location data even in micro spaces, Geofencing is only limited to fixed radius and is good for large areas like a city. Naturally, for more contextual real time business driving notifications it lacks credibility for business specific use.
Juned Ghanchi is chief marketing officer for IndianAppDevelopers — mobile app development company, which develop and delivers mobile application to more than 100 big brands to startup companies around the world. He has a successful background as an app sales strategist, consultant, marketer, project manager and he is also frequent speaker at IT industry events.