Retail in Asia

In Trends

Overcoming the challenges of retail Wi-Fi

It sounds like a simple proposition for retailers: provide Wi-Fi for customers and employees to use with their smartphones and tablets inside their stores.

Shoppers are coming to expect it: in a recent survey by SapientNitro and GfK Roper, 63 percent said free Wi-Fi would enhance their shopping experience. And even though some will use the service to compare prices online, more and more retail chains are offering Wi-Fi service to customers.

In the 2012 holiday season JC Penney Inc Target Corp. and Saks Inc. joined the ranks of other chains that had offered Wi-Fi in previous years, including Macy’s Inc., Sam’s Club and Nordstrom Inc. Wi-Fi also offers opportunities to improve employee productivity and customer satisfaction–for example, by allowing a sales person to check the stockroom without leaving the floor, or even to complete a sales transaction in the aisles.