If we’re to give you one piece of connectivity advice, it’s to not let the competition beat you at your own game when it comes to WiFi.
Gone are the days of guest WiFi being the preserve of a select few. Now, you’ll find quality, uninterrupted and free, WiFi in most hotels. But it’s not its presence that’s important to take note of, it’s how it’s being used for competitive edge.
Strong and secure WiFi is about delivering an in-demand service to the customers that pay your hotel’s bills. Therefore, it makes perfect sense to up your WiFi game in line with evolving customer expectations and habits.
If you’re not already, we recommend harnessing the power of WiFi for service in the following ways. It will hep you provide a distinguishing guest experience and reap brand, operational and financial rewards.
1. Use your WiFi login portal intelligently
Here, you can promote relevant hotel amenities, promotions and local attractions which are ideally shaped using guest behaviour insights. This allows you to offer that sought-after added value and extend your service beyond the hotel’s four walls.
Throughout the duration of your guest’s stay, you could even automatically update content based on hotel WiFi browsing habits. The trick to getting portals right is ensuring that “tailored” doesn’t lean toward intrusive. Whatever you choose to promote must have a tangible payoff for your guest and respect privacy settings.
2. Make the front desk mobile
Front of house services such as wake-up calls and breakfast bookings have always been popular – especially in more premium establishments – and as guests aspire towards an ever-more personalised experience, it’s unlikely that this will change much. But not use WiFi for service enhancement?
You could offer a mobile option for service requests via an app. With a tap of a screen, your guests can have complete control over their stay, all from the comfort of their room. And with so many service apps now available for white-labelling, this type of technology is more accessible than ever.
3. Bring IoT devices into the everyday
As a hotelier, you’ll know that fantastic service is your product and that this rests on an ability to anticipate and address individual needs at every guest touchpoint. WiFi can be a powerful tool in curating a truly discerning experience, especially when paired with Internet of Things (IoT) devices.
In-room tablets, for example, can be connected to WiFi and various lighting, temperature and media IoT devices to enable a guest to make their stay bespoke with a swipe. Using WiFi in this manner can help you attract digital-savvy travellers and increase guest satisfaction and deliver data insights for informing future room design and features.
4. Simplify and streamline colleague communication
Have you ever felt that communication between departments or teams is cumbersome and long-winded? Well, why not share some of the heavy lifting with you WiFi network? Your colleagues are likely carrying smartphones with them or may have tablets for housekeeping tasks. Consider utilising these powerful tools as internal communication hubs via WiFi.
For example, housekeeping may discover broken electronics. They can log the fault with maintenance and send an instant message to the front desk to resolve, complete with pictures. This would save an awful lot of back and forth – increasing efficiency and productivity and focusing resource on direct guest service.
5. Boost performance, coverage and security
Okay, this one isn’t quite how hotels are using WiFi, but it does say a lot about its importance as a business tool. Guests demand consistent, strong WiFi across your entire hotel estate, especially if you’re an event venue. This new landscape has lead to many hotels undertaking connectivity, speed and availability audits.
Hotels are also reinforcing WiFi cybersecurity to manage the sheer number of cyberthreats inherent to public WiFi. From segmenting networks to installing the latest cybersecurity tech, if your WiFi isn’t watertight it quickly becomes a greater risk than an asset.