Wi-Fi has become a necessity in the world of hospitality, with the majority of people using their phones to interact with brands, and most now expecting hospitality Wi-Fi to be present.
Highlighting the significance of connectivity, 80% of people believe that Wi-Fi in bars or restaurants contribute towards a positive, personalised experience, with this number rising to 90% among those in the age bracket of 35-44. As well as this, almost two thirds of customers say that Wi-Fi access would grow their loyalty when visiting a venue to enjoy a drink or meal.
Here’s how you can make the most of your customer Wi-Fi, delighting customers, personalising experiences and benefiting your business simultaneously:
Make it fast
Wi-Fi should be fast in every sense… logging into the portal should not be time consuming and the internet connection should also be quick. It’s vital to make it hassle-free for customers to get online, making it a streamlined process, rather than a frustrating one!
Keep it on-brand
Don’t make your Wi-Fi feel like a separate entity. The most important part of this is to name the Wi-Fi’s network ID so it is recognisable, helping guests to find it with ease. Next, make your Wi-Fi process align with your brand as much as possible, using the same tone of voice and branding. Logging onto your Wi-Fi should feel like part of a connected experience for guests.
Promote your hospitality Wi-Fi
Without adequate promotion, very few will be aware that you offer Wi-Fi. From promotional stickers on walls to menu add-ons or having staff mention it to all customers, there are many ways to make sure customers benefit from Wi-Fi, making their experience even better. Consider the most suitable methods of doing this, for example, if you look for an easy process, visible promotion can save staff members’ time having to explain or share the password… however, if you look to increase engagement, having staff explain the Wi-Fi benefits with customers can work to create conversation.
Add a personal touch
Get creative and use Wi-Fi to welcome guests. Whether it’s a personalised message for returning customers or a brand-specific message which is updated on a regular basis, there are many ways to create a personal, on-brand experience for Wi-Fi users. Don’t be afraid to use this as an opportunity to get your company’s personality across and make the experience stand out from your competitors.
Grow customer engagement
By promoting social media channels and campaigns on your Wi-Fi portal, you can quickly increase your following and levels of engagement. Think of methods of encouraging interaction, from seasonal hashtags to topical talking points.
Increase length of stay
Enabling customers to check their emails, catch up on news and use social media with ease can work to keep visitors entertained for a longer period of time. A customer who is waiting for an email, working remotely, or expecting an important call may depart a hospitality venue sooner if they are unable to do what they need while there.
Promote loyalty schemes
Wi-Fi is important for online loyalty schemes, giving easy access to necessary applications or pages. There can also be reminders on the Wi-Fi portal which are designed to prompt and incentivise customers who aren’t yet signed up to loyalty schemes.
Make it secure
Security is vital when it comes to network and internet usage. Without the required network security and firewalls, what was designed to improve guests’ experiences can easily become a PR disaster. One of the methods of protecting guests and hospitality businesses from improper network usage is to implement an Acceptable Use Policy (AUP), making sure guests comply with your business’ rules of internet use.
When customers log into Wi-Fi welcome portals, you are able to use this opportunity to collect data. Ask a few questions about customers’ preferences, experiences and suggestions, helping to continuously improve, as well as making visitors feel valued. Create login options which signal the frequency of customers’ visits, also allowing you to check the duration and times of their browsing. All of this data can be used to understand guests’ behaviours and shape future business decisions.
Advertise special offers
Use your Wi-Fi portal to remind visitors of special offers, or even give exclusive offers to those accessing Wi-Fi. This reminder can work to upsell effectively, whether it’s room service at a hotel, a free cake with a coffee, or a discounted menu on offer.
A well-designed Wi-Fi portal is much more than a way for customers to connect to the internet. It creates opportunities to communicate, promote and conduct market research, giving visitors an experience to remember.
Holly brings a wealth of experience in both print and digital publishing and is very passionate about the hospitality industry.