Top ‘Must Haves’ of Next-Generation Retail Wi-Fi
Treat Wi-Fi as a business enablement/business intelligence tool
A device’s Wi-Fi signals can be anonymously detected and, due to the high-percentage of shoppers carrying Wi-Fi-equipped devices, can be used to accurately measure shopper behavior. The Aerohive Cloud Services solution platform includes open APIs that leverage Wi-Fi network data in applications that provide comprehensive retail analytics, for example:
- Visitor traffic data, engagement & loyalty metrics, and historical data for multiple stores
- Comparative performance between stores, and assessment of campaign and promotion performance
- This new business intelligence forms the basis for refined planning of marketing activities and shopper outreach to further enhance customer engagement and ultimately helps increase customer spend and revenue.
Leverage Cloud Configuration Groups
Cloud Configuration Groups allows IT managers to create a single network policy that can span the entire enterprise network while still keeping management simplified. Using Client Configuration Groups together with classification rules, a single network policy can be tailored for specific groups of devices. For example, different groupings of APs can be assigned different device templates, radio profiles, user VLANs, management VLANs, DNS, RADIUS, and even SSIDs. IT administrators can use a global network policy for efficient deployment (and future policy updates), while still enabling per location definitions for configuration items.
Use Dual 5 GHz Technology When Extra Capacity is Needed
Aerohive’s AP250 offers the ability to use a software-defined radio. This feature allows you to enable the 2.4 GHz radio to act as a 5 GHz radio all the time or when capacity is needed. The 5 GHz band offers more non-overlapping channels than 2.4 GHz, so when its “crunch” time, an extra 5 GHz radio can make the difference.
Troubleshoot Problems Using the Proper Tools
Aerohive’s Network 360 tracks the network health and performance using an intuitive time-slider that adjusts for day, week, and month views of the key performance indicators for:
- Devices Health
- Clients Health
- Wi-Fi Health
- Network Health
- Services Health
- Application Health
Aerohive’s Client 360 tracks the client experience using an intuitive time-slider that adjusts for day, week, and month along with several finely tuned comparative vectors such as:
- Day, Week, Month client usage and health when the client was actually connected to the network session and aggregate views of client location and experience, and where the client sent and received the most data when connected to the network
- Session and aggregate views of client location and experience, and where the client spent the most time when connected to the network
- Client trail as the client roams across the network with corresponding roaming and network services health (i.e. DHCP, DNS, Auth, Internet Access, etc.), comparing and measuring individual client experiences against expected behavior through machine-learning capabilities
Manage of All of the Stores from a Single Interface
For many retailers, having potentially thousands of sites, across multiple countries, and limited in-house Wi-Fi expertise, Aerohive makes it simple to remotely deploy and support mobile devices and retail Wi-Fi solutions.
- Simplified deployment of one to thousands of devices with auto-provisioning, a guided workflow, and an interactive on-screen step-by-step guided configuration assistant.
- Remotely onboard tablet devices for mobile PoS onto the network without pre-provisioning.
“Drop Ship” Access Points
By adding your access points to your network ahead of time, you will be able to ship the access points to the local team, mount it (and plug it in) and HiveManager can do the rest. You can have the access point automatically download the latest network policy and firmware, and then provide Wi-Fi coverage. You won’t have to go onsite to turn on new networks. You’ll be able to let HiveManager do it. If you want to check on the status of the network, be sure to leverage HiveManager Shortcuts with Ask Alexa!
Test Firmware Updates Individually
With other vendors, upgrading firmware is an all-or-none option. Aerohive offers the flexibility to upgrade a single access point at a time. For mission-critical networks, new firmware upgrades need to be thoroughly tested. Other vendors either don’t allow this or require you set up a duplicate network (with a duplicate controller).
Upgrade Your Network in Stages
As new Wi-Fi technology enters the market (Wi-Fi 6), Aerohive allows you to easily add this new technology to your network thanks to its cloud-managed architecture. With other vendors, you’ll have to purchase a compatible controller to use new technology like 802.11ax.
Leverage Cloud Networking for Scalabilty
For many retailers, having potentially thousands of sites, across multiple countries, and limited in-house Wi-Fi expertise, Aerohive makes it simple to remotely deploy and support mobile devices and retail Wi-Fi solutions. From a single dashboard, you’ll be able to monitor all access points, all switches, and all branch routers. If your company grows by 50 stores next year, you’ll be ready to take on the challenge.
Simplify Security with PPSK
When using a single pre-shared key for all devices, revoking a single device would mean that an IT department would need to change the key for every device. This process could take days or even weeks depending on the size of the network. With PPSK, you’ll be done with just a few clicks. You can revoke access, for a single device or individual, without affecting everyone else on the network.