The Internet has become an integral part of our daily lives. Whether it is for business or pleasure, we have become heavily reliant on having internet wherever we are and whenever we need it. Whilst most users with mobile phones have a data allowance, the data allowance is almost always NEVER enough and mobile phone data is not cheap. Offering a guest WiFi is a great way to offer your customers something that adds value to their experience with your business and it doesn’t have to cost you anything.
As more and more businesses offer free WiFi, customers are starting to expect it rather than be surprised that it’s on offer. WiFi is moving away from being a luxury perk, in some industries it is more of an expectation, and companies that ignore this are losing out on an opportunity to build brand loyalty and connect with their customers.
Over and above branding and marketing opportunities, a guest WiFi is also an important level of security that you should introduce to your network if you have customers/guests joining your network or staff members on your WiFi with their mobile phones.
Here are our top reasons why you should implement a guest WiFi.
#1. Increased Marketing Opportunities
A guest Wifi presents so many advertising and marketing opportunities for businesses. From branded guest portals to customised website landing pages with specials etc. There is no limit to what you can do and how you can get your customers to interact with your business… Just because you offer them free wifi.
Some examples of how a guest WiFi could help with marketing are:
- Branded Guest Login Portal.
- Redirect to customised landing pages.
- Increased brand awareness.
- Social media likes and check-ins.
- E-mail collection for newsletter campaigns.
#2. Increased Footfall
For some businesses such as restaurants, coffee shops, free WiFi is a great incentive for customers to choose your establishment instead of the competition. A Simple “Free WiFi” sign could be the difference between someone walking in your door or not. This could be a simple answer to “how do we get customers through the door?”.
#3. Increased Time Spent at Your Business Premises
When people are bored they want to finish what ever they are doing and get out of there. For a coffee shop it could be one less coffee sold and for a shoe shop, the bored partner hanging around while the significant other shops could be the difference between a sale and no sale. A Guest WiFi keeps customers connected and entertained, giving them no reason to rush whatever they are doing.
#4. Enhanced Security
Asking for your business (or home) WiFi code is common place and we “often” give it out freely without considering the consequences. Once a person has your WiFi code, that code is stored in the device indefinitely and if it ends up in the wrong hands could cause untold problems.
A correctly implemented guest network ensures that your main network is isolated from the guest network to ensure that all devices and information on the internal network is safe. A good strategy is to keep business related devices on your internal network and non business related devices (such as employee mobile phones and visitors) on the guest network.
With a guest WiFi network in place, you will be able to:
- Reduce the risk of your network being infected by viruses, malware and ransomware.
- Control who has access your company’s network of computers, printers, servers, network attached storage and other resources.
- Greater protection from your company’s primary network being hacked.
#5. Controlled Bandwidth Usage
Unlike a shared WiFi, with a guest WiFi you can set usage limits so that when your guests are online your employees will not have to compromise on network performance to carry on working. You can also implement filters to restrict access to certain internet resources (such as activating parental control) to eliminate the potential of your guests wandering into inappropriate websites while on your guest network.
#6. Improved Customer Experience
Offering free WiFi to your customers for social networking, checking emails, online shopping, and surfing the internet can have a direct influence on building customer loyalty, resulting in increased sales. In businesses where customers end up waiting in a queue (such as take aways, banks and doctors rooms), offering a free guest wifi is a great value add to take their minds off the boredom of waiting.
While a guest network is no doubt a great way of offering free WiFi to your customers, not all wireless routers are capable of supporting or providing a guest network. Be sure to examine your wireless hardware to determine if you have the adequate wireless equipment to support such a setup. If you need assistance in setting up your guest wifi network make sure you call the right people who know how to set it up correctly.