Why WiFi is a Major WIN For Your Bar or Restaurant

 In Industry Trends Blog Archives, Marketing

You’re selling drinks and food and are maybe wondering what the Internet has to do with your business?

Technology has permeated every aspect of our lives. Appliances have become more sophisticated as have phones, cars and computers. Still, you are wondering what does that have to do with my bar? Everything.

Your Customers Want Access to WiFi

As technology has evolved so have our decisions as they relate to technology. According to a 2012 University of South Florida study on the impact of WiFi, 70 percent of survey respondents said they preferred bars and restaurants with WiFi hotspots. The survey results showed that people purposely choose restaurants, bars and coffee shops with WiFi hotspots.

Since setting up a WiFi hotspot is fairly cheap, this should be your top priority if you don’t already have one. The demand for WiFi will only grow, the study said, as customers use the wireless network to make phone calls so as to avoid using cell phone minutes.

The University of South Florida study also found there is a correlation between having a WiFi hotspot and a customer’s likelihood in being a repeat customer. Don’t miss out if you don’t have a hotspot already. It’s a cheap way to get customers in the door.

Use WiFi For Marketing

This may sound trivial but there are features of social media tools that allow customers to identify where they are when they post messages. The free marketing is done by your customers, posting messages or photographs from your bar, identifying they’ve been a customer there having fun.

The next step is yours. Use your free WiFi as part of your marketing package. Advertise in Twitter and Facebook messages that you are one of the only restaurants or bars on your street, in your area that has free WiFi.

Make sure you have signs in your windows or on your front door advertising that you have free WiFi. Get a sandwich board if you are doing a WiFi launch. You want to get the message out because as the study showed, people in part make decisions on where to eat or drink based on the availability of WiFi.

Some may be concerned about the security of WiFi and that is why your establishment should be password protected and encrypted. You give out the password to customers as they ask ensuring that no one sitting in a car in your parking lot can hop on your free network without being a customer.

Don’t charge for your WiFi. It might be tempting to make money off a service you are providing, but the University of South Florida showed that the one way customers are turned off by WiFi is when an establishment charges for the service.

Customers want as much as they can get for free and since this service is very low cost to the business, it’s not that much of a sacrifice to offer it.

WiFi Is Never Going Away

While it may seem as if WiFi was only invented a couple of years ago, it’s been in existence for more than a decade. As more and more people buy equipment that uses wireless technology to connect to the Internet, the more appealing having a WiFi hotspot is to your business. Don’t miss out on offering this service. It’s not a fad, it’s here to stay. Where do you use WiFi?

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  • Rodney

    Its a great article and business advice that bars and restaurants should consider very seriously. I agree do not charge for wifi. Keep it free. I would recommend using social media wifi so the bar or restaurant could have a public and a private wifi network. The public network should use social media so the customer can log in using their favorite social account. They could also use this to capture email addresses, phone numbers, share on social sites, and gives the business owner another opportunity to market to their customers. Social media wifi is a great way to build your book of business.

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