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When talking about the technology used in consumer sales, we often tend to think of PoS systems initially. However, there are many other forms of technology used, such as telephones or digital signage. The growing presence of technology in a variety of forms tend to rely heavily on the internet for communication and in turn, WiFi.
At the heart of any hospitality or retail business is the Electronic Point of Sale system. Whether a cash register or card payment terminal, they are essential for sales management and customer billing. IP based solutions are now very much commonplace throughout the industry, especially when we think of how often a credit card terminal can be used away from the cash register location in a restaurant, for example.
Perhaps less significant than in days past, but still an essential tool, the humble telephone has evolved tremendously over the years. Gone are the days of hefty old telephone networks, today’s business phone systems are typically VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol), relying on internet connectivity to communicate back to a cloud-based management platform.
Security is, of course, essential for most businesses, with CCTV and alarm systems offering much-needed peace of mind. Both of which these days are dependant on the internet and in turn WiFi to store imaging to cloud-based servers, or connect to remote monitoring services.
While the traditional model of in-store sales has not changed too much, technology has made new resources available to us. Some businesses choose to equip staff with tablets to enable closer interaction with customers, while others use self-service payment kiosks to allow an easier or more efficient buying process.
Advertising is, of course, an essential element of the overall sales process, drawing the attention of consumers to your latest promotions and special offers. While conventional methods are still prominent, Digital Signage provides a more enriched experience with greater flexibility and marketing potential. Not to mention that screens do tend to catch the eye much more often than a cardboard display.
More and more business are providing their customers in-store WiFi, allowing easy internet access while also enabling an additional market platform. Increased customer satisfaction occurs as a result, and in turn, offering this service may have a positive influence on a customers decision to return.
Digital tools open up new possibilities for analysing and even influencing customer behaviour at the point of sale. Indoor geolocation provides precise data on the customer’s journey through the premises and the amount of time spent in certain areas. At the same time, proximity marketing allows promotions to be presented in certain areas to guide consumers toward a specific purchase.
Mobile apps are a great way to engage with customers, allowing promotion of products and services while they visit your business, but also the ability to start that engagement journey before they even arrive, and continue it once they have left. Overall positively influencing your customer experience.
Through the use of technology comes new and exciting ways to captivate customers, and drive their purchase decision forwards. Augmented and virtual reality could through the use of a tablet, mobile app, VR headset or even a connected mirror, allow shoppers the ability to try on multiple outfits quickly, or visualise a new piece of furniture in their living room.
With the digitalisation of consumer sales, the number of connected services is forever increasing. Furthermore, many of the services that once operated on local servers now rely heavily on WiFi and internet access.
Particular devices such as card payment terminals, telephones and video surveillance are critical in day to day business and would have an immense impact if unavailable. The importance of having a robust and reliable network is, therefore, crucial. Service Level Agreement (SLA’s) are needed to ensure help is available when needed most, along with symmetrical internet access so that your devices have no trouble in both uploading or downloading data whenever required.
WiFi as a Service by Wifirst is the perfect solution to power consumer sales in our digital age. By providing full management of the core network, data line, WiFi deployment, monitoring and ongoing maintenance, business owners can concentrate on driving their sales revenue with complete peace of mind that their network management is in safe hands.
"Since 2002, Wifirst has been a leader in innovative WiFi and Fibre connectivity solutions, trusted by thousands of customers across Europe to provide high quality robust networks."