How Wi-Fi Drives A Connected Retail Experience

In our first installment of this series on the connected experience, we explored the benefits of collecting data and acting on insights. In today’s post, we look specifically at how the retail sector has been an early adopter of Wi-Fi tracking technologies.

In the face of stiff competition from online outlets, brick-and-mortar retailers need to collect and analyze as much data as possible to improve the customer experience and find new value-adding services.

The ultimate aim is to attract loyal customers who make their purchases there and then, rather than browsing and ordering products online later. Even simple information such as the customer’s route around the store can help identify improvements to point-of-sale displays to boost average transaction value.

To offer the best shopping experience, and to maximise sales, a 360-degree view is required of each customer – one that extends across all points of presence, on and offline.

In-store Wi-Fi is central to this omnichannel approach, which Bill Hoppin wrote about previously here.

Yes, encouraging customers to sign up for a connection to in-store Wi-Fi networks provides marketers with all-important contact information for use in later campaigns. But did you know it also provides a relatively simple way to monitor exactly how shoppers move around stores, collecting information about how time is spent?

Wi-Fi monitoring systems allow retailers to calculate how long is spent looking at a display (“linger time”) and its effectiveness. Areas of the store that experience relatively low footfall can also be pinpointed, informing future redesigns of shop layout.

Systems can even monitor the effect that long queues at the checkout have on customer behavior – for example, whether more customers are leaving stores without purchasing. Wi-Fi is emerging as the cheapest and most effective way to collect such data, negating the need to install expensive physical sensors and hardware around stores.

Retail – the current state of play

The use of engagement, monitoring, and analytics over Wi-Fi in stores is constantly changing.

To gain insights into what the future might hold, our next post in this series contains some hands-on experience from some leading industry experts.

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All posts in this series:

1) Are You Getting The Most Out Of Data Your Wi-Fi Is Collecting?

2) How Wi-Fi Drives A Connected Retail Experience

3) How To Engage Customers Through Guest Wi-Fi

4) Retailers: Is Your Network Ready For Real-Time Analytics?

5) Can Wi-Fi Help Retailers Build New Relationships With Customers?

6) How Wi-Fi and Business Insights Help Enterprises Cut Operating Costs

7) What Role Does Data Play In The World’s Smartest Building?

8) Starting A Wi-Fi Tracking Project? How You Use Your Data Is Key.

9) Four Things Businesses Should Do To Get Started On Wi-Fi Tracking

Stephen Hoy is Aerohive's International Business Development Manager

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