Graham Cove: “Wi-Fi will soon be business critical for retailers”


Every public venue – retail, hospitality, transport hubs, etc. – want their guests to be able to connect to the Internet over Wi-Fi. But there’s a lot more to venue Wi-Fi that just that: Right now, new technology & business models are emerging, says Graham Cove, a veteran of the carrier Wi-Fi industry and international venue Wi-Fi expert.

“We’re already seeing the use of Wi-Fi-based location & data analytics for determining user behaviour for example in retail stores. This gives venue owners a tool for better marketing and a better in-store experience. Today, most location data is anonymised, so that stores will know the location of users but not who the exact user is,” says Graham.

This approach gets around basic privacy issues, of course. The next step for venue owners is to employ ‘permission-based’ consumer engagement, says Graham.

“When consumers grant permission for the store to record shopping preferences and their location, it’s also possible to add real value to the experience by sending information and offers about their favourite products while the shopper is in the store,” Graham says. When done right, this is a big opportunity for retailers everywhere, he says.

He also says that tablet or smartphone-based payment systems – such as those known from Apple’s flagship retail stores – will soon be everywhere. When this happens, venues will want to make absolutely sure that their in-store Wi-Fi works all the time. Otherwise revenue will be lost, he says.

“I believe that the venues & retailers themselves should take ownership of their own Wi-Fi services instead of relying on carriers to deliver something that is often not great quality. In-store Wi-Fi will soon be a business-critical for all retailers,” he says.

Meet Graham Cove of Synaptix U.K. at Wi-Fi NOW Amsterdam for deep dive into Wi-Fi for consumer engagement. Go to this link to register now!

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