4 Ways MSPs Can Build Incremental Revenue Streams with Guest Wi-Fi

Offering guest Wi-Fi services isn’t just a smart move for your customers, it can help you build your subscription-based services, too.

Guest Wi-Fi Revenue

Any time you pitch a new service offering to a customer or prospect, one of the first questions they’re going to ask is what kind of return on investment can they expect. When it comes to selling wireless LAN (WLAN) infrastructure and access points — and more specifically, guest Wi-Fi services, there are multiple benefits to your customers. Once you overcome their initial objection and they’re ready to buy, there are several ways they can use this service to increase customer engagement while they and your company earn incremental monthly recurring revenue streams.

First, How Free Wi-Fi Benefits Your Customers

It might seem counterintuitive for a retailer or professional services customer to pay for something that they’re going to give away. For a retailer specifically, it may feel even more counterintuitive to make it easier for their in-store patrons to access the store’s biggest competitor: Amazon.

However, several studies prove out the value of free guest Wi-Fi. A study of 400 U.S. small retailers conducted by Devicescape, for example, found that offering free Wi-Fi to customers provided multiple benefits. For example:

  • Nearly 62% said that customers spent more time in their facility
  • Around 50% said customers spent more money
  • Among those who deployed free Wi-Fi to serve customers better, they reported a 79% success rate.

Once a client is ready to implement guest Wi-Fi, there are dozens of upsell opportunities an MSP can add to the sale. Here are some of the top ones to consider, which can also become sources of monthly recurring revenue:

1. Loyalty Programs and Marketing Services

One of the ways savvy businesses get clients to use their free Wi-Fi is by tying it their customer loyalty program. How does one become a loyalty member? By providing their personal information and signing up of course. Once the retailer has this info, it has a captive audience for loyalty building and marketing initiatives that it can launch via email, text and social media, such as trackable and redeemable coupons and personalized offers about new merchandise and services.

A small retailer may not have the internal resources to create and manage these kinds of loyalty and marketing programs, but an MSP could provide these services for a nominal monthly fee.

2. Data Analytics Reporting and Consulting

There’s lots of valuable customer data points that can be captured via the WLAN such as new and return visitor counts, how much time a patron spends at a particular part of the store, days and times patrons visit the store, etc. Capturing data and turning it into actionable information are two different things, however. MSPs can help their customers by offering data analytics reporting services and helping customers make smarter business decisions.

3. Content Services

In non-retail settings, the guest Wi-Fi splash page can be used as a way to educate visitors about important topics. For instance, a zoo could provide visitors with more information about an animal, exhibit or special event. The message could be updated based on the visitor’s geographic location, too. For instance, if someone accessed the splash page while standing near the giraffe exhibit, they may be presented with facts about each giraffe, such as their gender, age, eating habits, and other interesting facts. Museums, sports arenas, and theme parks could all offer similar location-based (or time-based) content presentations as a way to give their guests a more engaging user experience. Because the content would need to be updated on a regular basis, an MSP could manage it as part of a subscription.

4. Advertising

The digital signage market is projected to grow from nearly $21 billion in 2017 to nearly $32 billion by 2023, per a study by Orbis Research. Many of the same uses and benefits for digital signage apply to guest Wi-Fi with the biggest difference being the size of the screen. Advertising, in particular, is a service that MSPs could bundle with guest Wi-Fi services. A CPG company, for example, could run an ad campaign on a retailer’s guest wi-fi splash page to help facilitate sales. Additionally, the internet service provider or Wi-Fi vendor could run an ad on the splash page highlighting their offering and pay the retailer in the form of a discounted fee for their service.

As you can see, there are lots of ways you can bundle guest Wi-Fi services with valuable add-on services. The key is understanding your customer’s business, identifying their need and filling the gap. Even if you don’t have the resources to manage a customer’s content, advertising, marketing, or you don’t have the expertise to offer consultative services, you can find companies that do offer these services, partner with them and earn recurring revenue as a referral partner.