StepsAway

A new agreement with GGP Inc. gets StepsAway’s mobile promotions platform to even more shopping centers.

The Los Angeles company, founded by a former Wet Seal Inc. president and former Disney Stores Worldwide senior vice president, said today that GGP has rolled out the platform to all of its centers with Wi-Fi, which adds about 100 more properties to the growing roster of malls using the technology. The move comes after GGP piloted the program at 15 of its centers in fall 2015.

“Promotions are not going away. We’re seeing this as an extension of your in-store print collaterals,” chief executive officer Allan Haims said of the technology platform.

StepsAway works off a center’s Wi-Fi network, with the company having exclusive access to use those networks for promotional activity. Thus retailers gain access to customers who choose to use a center’s free Wi-Fi offering rather than requiring shoppers to download an app. Retailers are then able to send targeted promotions to shoppers using the browser on their mobile devices. To make it even easier, these promotions can be sent out from a cloud-based platform, meaning an executive can be sitting in an office miles away from a mall and deploy a targeted promotion to consumers across multiple centers.

“The idea of the retail landscape continuing to evolve and shoppers using their mobile devices when they’re shopping in a mall has become more pronounced. That continues to grow,” Haims said.

The GGP announcement means StepsAway is now at nearly 150 shopping centers owned by GGP, Taubman Centers and Macerich Co. in the U.S.

Haims confirmed the company is actively speaking to other mall operators about expanding the StepsAway footprint. It’s also looking ahead to personalization and data analytics for retailers in the future.

While some shopping centers are ailing, those that can create compelling tenant rosters, experiences and integrate useful technology are winning. Brick-and-mortar sales continue to still be the dominant channel where most transactions are still notched even as online grows, Haims said. StepsAway aims to help retailers influence consumer behavior before they even step foot into a store, the ceo said.

“We’re the bridge between digital and brick-and-mortar,” Haims said.