Will Providing Wi-Fi for Customers Benefit Your Business?
Providing free internet access in your small business can provide multiple benefits - and not just for the general public
Yes! No matter what industry you operate in it is crucial that you provide your customers, clients, members or whatever you choose to call them, with an internet connection. After all, it’s 2016.
For some businesses it’s just obvious. Let’s play a game of hypotheticals. You own a small coffee shop in the centre of quaint little market town. What’s your target market? Of course people who like coffee, but let’s look deeper than that.
People who simply like coffee will visit you, probably on their way to work, buy one cup and then leave. Great, there’s £4 in the till but what if you can target people who purchase more than once per visit? The people who you want to target are those who, yes like coffee, but also people with spare time on their hands. After all, who else spends time in a coffee shop?
What do people expect?
You need to remember what kind of society we live in. It’s a connected community where having a strong internet connection is a necessity. And that’s not just whilst we’re at home, we want it to be available 24/7, no matter where we are. In my experience, if I’m able to connect to the internet somewhere, I’m a lot happier and therefore more likely to stay. And like everybody else, the longer I stay, the more likely I am to purchase extra products.
This isn’t just relative to coffee shops; it’s true across every industry that’s customer-facing. On top of spending more on products/services during each visit, every minute longer that a customer spends in your establishment is spent building an affinity with your brand, products and even your staff. Once this rapport has been built, the customer is much more likely to visit you again in the future.
Some more reasons why providing Wi-Fi to your customers is a good idea:
Attract new customers – Sitting alone some in a coffee shop or pub can be boring; however a recent survey found that 53% of people would be happy to sit alone in a cafe if Wi-Fi was available.
Great for data capture – Having a specific log-in page for your Wi-Fi connection is a very powerful tool. It forces customers to give you their details, most importantly their email addresses. Hey-presto, you can now market to them directly.
It doesn’t have to cost a fortune – There are many options available when it comes to providing your customers with a connection. Many providers can create a bespoke package that suits you and your needs.
Get an edge over your competitors – Being connected is everything in 2016 – god forbid you have to go 20 minutes without checking-in and engaging with the world of social media! Having a reliable Wi-Fi connection could be the difference when a customer is choosing where to spend their hard earned cash.
Providing your customers with an easy access, ‘no strings attached’ Wi-Fi connection is a must. It’s great for customer longevity and loyalty, as well as increasing average spend and customer experience (and therefore satisfaction).
Research suggests that in 2016 89% of companies planned to compete on the basis of customer experience.
Are there any negatives?
As with everything there are potential negatives when introducing public Wi-Fi to your business. And as you probably expect, the majority of possible issues are based around security. However if you choose a good internet provider then they’ll ensure you have the necessary protection.
There’s only one other ‘problem’ (if you’d even call it that) – What happens when you get too busy? What if customers just won’t leave? No worries, there are systems in place to limit each customers Wi-Fi usage. This can beneficial for some businesses that have a high customer turnover, e.g. fast food restaurants. But don’t forget, the longer your customers stay, the more they’re likely to spend on your products – it’s a win-win situation!
So, will providing Wi-Fi for customers really benefit your business? YES, it most definitely will. As long as you choose the correct provider it’s a no brainer. Well, that’s assuming you want more customers who spend more?
Aaron Watts is a digital marketing and PR executive for DuoCall