Free Public Wi-Fi Networks at Shopping Centres
A technology solution company in Australia, through its installations and management of free public Wi-Fi networks for shopping centres and retailers, is putting Big Data into the palms of retailers. Through a connection to the consumer’s mobile phone, consumer data can be captured, tracked and distilled for the retailer – allowing them to make data driven decisions, and ultimately maximise their profits.
Providing free Wi-Fi appears to be providing convenience and enhancing shopping experience. At the back of it, the technology is actually collecting information of each registered customer to design targeted advertising which the retailers can push to customers, based on shopping habits and purchasing history. The technology is tracking what the consumer is doing with their smartphones that are now on the free Wi-Fi network, following the consumers around the shopping centre (creating a heat map to see how much time consumers spend at each location), current and past shopping history.
This is done through 4 steps:
1. Connect - where customers are first registered (once only to use in all shopping centres operated by the same company) to use the free Wi-Fi network;
2. Understand - where customer habits and behaviours are monitored, online and offline, in store and out of store;
3. Engage - where targeted promotions are delivered to the smartphones of customers, which can take the form of SMS, email, social media or downloaded apps; and
4. Retain - where continued effort to follow up with loyalty, points, rewards and redemption is implemented to create repeat customers.
Many of the major Australian retail groups including GPT Group, Brookfield, and Ipoh Garden – which owns Sydney’s QVB, Galeries, Strand Arcade and Chifley Plaza, are already implementing this solution exploiting the Big Data to drive sales.
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