The Wi-Fi Explosion - Its About Your Customer Base

New Wi-Fi technologies offer a simple, affordable way for businesses to start engaging their customers online according to Di Ubaldo & Co.

We've spoken to many Australian businesses who are providing free Wi-Fi hotspots because they believe this gives them an edge in attracting and retaining customers. They are paying Internet companies to do this but often not gaining the benefits of online presence.

As a result many businesses are missing out on simple ways to increase their revenue and customer base.

With smart tablets and mobile devices, just one click is all it takes to create a lasting marketing and communication connection with customers using Wi-Fi.

The technology is now very simple. On entering a Wi-Fi zone, a customer using a tablet or phone is typically presented with a list of Wi-Fi networks available. All customers have to do is click on the business name to be automatically connected via Wi-Fi to its web site. There are no search engines or web addresses it is just one click and customers are on the web site.

Once customers are attracted to the site (the hard part !), businesses can make the most of the relationship by offering information on their products and services, guides to the area, special offers, entertainment, ordering, booking services and many other services.

Social media channels like Facebook and Twitter can also be used in the same way to build client networks and create a compelling online presence via a single click.

Wi-Fi hotpots are the fastest growing mechanism for access to the Internet in Australia according to the Australian Communications and Media Authority Report 3, Smartphones and tablets, Take-up and use in Australia published in January 2013.

The ACMA report indicated a 32% increase in Wi-Fi hot spot use in the June 2012 quarter compared to a year earlier. About 50% of tablet owners used a Wi-Fi only device and 47% had a combined cellular mobile and Wi-Fi devices again highlighting the growing importance of Wi-Fi.

Di Ubaldo & Co opinion is that Wi-Fi has now shifted from a simple free Internet access for customers to become a key element of the marketing strategy for business. It is now all about customer engagement and not technology or free Internet access.