WiFi for Retail

Today’s shoppers demand more from their retail experience – whether it’s the ability to check prices quickly, receive tailored offers, or sign up to loyalty schemes without having to carry a pocketful of plastic.

The smartphone gives retailers extraordinary customer engagement potential
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Emily Almond

A robust, commercial-grade WiFi solution will transform the in-store shopping experience for customers and staff alike. Connectivity can boost operational efficiency, improve stock control and offer unparalleled levels of customer insight – critical in the increasingly competitive market of high street retail.

WiFi on the high street

The internet has transformed consumer purchasing decisions, and retailers have been quick to adopt it as a vital channel to market. Despite this, around three quarters of UK retailers still don’t have robust in-store WiFi. Of those that do, around 50% don’t advertise it in a significant way. What many don’t realise is that there’s more to in-store WiFi than just keeping customers happy as a ‘nice to have’. It can also drive sales.

Know your customer

In the digital shopping environment, data capture has become critical. Understanding who the customers are – their ages, genders, purchasing preferences, movement through the store and so much more – provides retailers with a clear strategy for carefully curated (targeted) in-store messaging and offers. This customer data can be as detailed as necessary, so retailers can look at everything from the demographic of a particular customer to the optimum shop layout for driving people to high-revenue items.

Targeted promotions

With the retail space more competitive than ever, retailers need to ensure they’re always one step ahead. Successful retailers find new ways to increase footfall, dwell time and average spend before their competitors manage it first. One way of boosting custom is through targeted promotions via in-store WiFi. Research amongst smartphone users suggests more than 70% of shoppers would be happy to receive a text or email with promotions, in exchange for receiving free in-store WiFi.

Improving the customer experience

Customers don’t like standing in long checkout queues. With in-store WiFi, sales staff can be equipped with mobile devices to cash-out customers on the shop floor, removing the need to queue. WiFi also allows shoppers to go online while they’re in-store, to read product reviews or compare prices. It can be a vital tool in improving the customer experience. Whether at home, on the move or in store, WiFi will help retailers complete the omni-channel message and ensure consistency of brand.

Operational efficiency

WiFi also offers retailers compelling operational benefits. Beyond the customer experience angle, it can transform a retailer’s operational efficiency – which directly impacts bottom-line figures. For example, time-consuming stock control and inventory processes can be automated to free up staff time and improve stock management. Smarter stocking means a retailer won’t run out of items, nor will they have thousands of pounds tied up wastefully in storerooms. Stretching these benefits out across the entire supply chain only amplifies the rewards.

Do more with WiFi

WiFi can be used for a whole host of other operational and customer-facing services. These include digital signage, EPOS, CCTV, in-store music and vending machines. Each of these platforms will also offer a new wealth of data, which retailers can use to continually improve their offering and stay competitive.

Options for WiFi

Creating a dynamic in-store WiFi experience can be a challenge, especially in high footfall locations. Do you build a whole new network or overlay your chosen solution on existing WiFi infrastructure? Are there options that don’t require major hardware upgrades? Can you find a business WiFi specialist able to give you a white label WiFi solution you can brand yourself? What are the cost implications and benefits of robust WiFi infrastructure, one that will allow the customer insights and access to data that you need?

Key to fulfilling your vision is the selection of a WiFi partner that is both flexible and experienced in delivering proven solutions – in line with both your current and future business requirements.

Retail WiFi by Virgin WiFi

Virgin WiFi is the connectivity expert, specialising in the end-to-end product: the design, building and operating of WiFi networks. Our team of engineers offers decades of experience, delivering WiFi to some of the UK’s most prestigious retailers. We understand what drives our customers’ businesses: their customers! Our services are brand-agnostic and we have a flexible service offering.

Our service centre is only a call away – not just for the shop owner but for every single one of their customers, 24/7. We monitor systems remotely and can fix problems, sometimes before a retailer even knows there’s an issue. If a serious concern were to arise that couldn’t be fixed remotely, we have engineers ready to be deployed.

Virgin WiFi’s offering is more than just a hardware installation. It’s a full-service wrap that comes not only with the technology but also our peerless experience and expertise.

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