Why you should offer complimentary Wi-Fi

And how you can get everything Wi-Fi offers you

by Johanna Key, Senior Marketing Communications Manager, AT&T In-Building Solutions & Wi-Fi

They compare prices. They check what’s available elsewhere. 8 out of 10 shoppers (US Census Bureau) use personal devices as their personal shopping assistants, putting the world’s largest mall at their fingertips.

Yet 91% of all retail sales still take place at old-fashioned brick-and-mortar stores (Deloitte). And most of those stores offer complimentary Wi-Fi.

It’s not an irony; it’s an opportunity. Because Wi-Fi offers an array of benefits—not just to your customers but your staff, your stores and your overall organization.

Create better customer experiences

For most retailers, this is the #1 reason driving technology investments like in-store Wi-Fi (Zebra 2017 Retail Vision Study). Because the same technology that lets shoppers search your competition can also power the courtesies and conveniences that keep shoppers in your stores.

Those courtesies start with the in-store marketing tools that complimentary Wi-Fi enables, like targeted coupons beamed to phones in passing pockets and purses. Once they’re inside, mobile point-of-sale devices free up sales staff from the register, allowing a sale to take place wherever the customer happens to be.

Handheld computers and scanners can answer shopper’s questions (How much? Does it come in a larger size? Do you have it in green?) without checking in back. Tablets and stationary kiosks allow shoppers to check on pricing and availability, too.

Shoppers expect to connect  


Create a more congenial work environment

The same complimentary Wi-Fi that enhances your customers’ in-store experience frees up your sales staff and helps them provide quicker, more helpful customer service up front.

Having the answers at their fingertips empowers your people—and reduces their stress levels. Now they don’t need to know everything; they just need to look it up. It works, especially for younger staff, members of the first generation for whom technology is just second nature.

Providing separate public Wi-Fi (for the sales floor) and private (for the back office) means you’re not only creating better customer experiences but a better, more efficient work environment. For example, everyday processes like billing and reporting can be more readily controlled and managed across all your locations.

Create deeper customer relationships

Complimentary Wi-Fi offers a free exchange of ideas and information between you and your customers. For starters, the login page to your Wi-Fi can ask for email addresses and birthdays. Suddenly it’s not so hard to surprise and delight customers with an unexpected coupon or keep track of loyalty points. Meanwhile, Wi-Fi opens a direct channel by which you can share news about your stores and customers can give their own feedback.

Obviously, offering complimentary Wi-Fi is more than a convenience for bargain hunters. It can facilitate tailored customer experiences. It can empower employees. And, it can enable more meaningful ways for you to relate to and engage with the customers you have—and the ones you want to attract.

For details and additional insights, visit our AT&T Business Wi-Fi site.