UniEuro is one of the top three Italian retailers in home appliances and digital products. Since 1967, it has developed into a well-known European chain enterprise of electric appliances, following the business principle of ‘Excellence and Achievement.’ Consumers have been impressed by its high-quality products, abundant choices, and professional service.
Challenges of Free Wi-Fi Networks
With the development of mobile Internet and smartphones, Internet access anytime, anywhere has become an accepted lifestyle. According to Mobidia, Wi-Fi networks carry about 70 percent of the world’s data traffic on smartphones. The proportion reaches 80 percent or even higher for indoor scenarios. Free Wi-Fi service is indispensable almost everywhere; therefore, more shopping malls and supermarkets hope to use it to attract customers and improve service satisfaction. Free Wi-Fi in these scenarios, however, faces the following challenges:
• Unprofessional network planning: No simulation tools, or only 2D simulation tools, are available, which cannot prevent interference between APs on the same floor and neighboring floors. Wi-Fi coverage holes hinder concurrent access and fail to achieve the desired access rates. Customer STAs fail to obtain IP addresses and are disconnected frequently during roaming, degrading customer experience. Unprofessional or improper network planning may also cause inaccurate STA location.
• No Return On Investment (ROI): Standard industry Wi-Fi solutions typically provide Internet access and simple portal advertisement pushing, failing to deliver any significant ROI.
UniEuro’s Requirements for Free Wi-Fi Solution
As one of Italy’s top three shopping malls and supermarkets, UniEuro is always committed to providing customers with stable, high-quality free Wi-Fi service; therefore, the retailer required a Wi-Fi solution that could achieve 100 percent coverage, eliminating any signal interference between APs on the same floor and neighboring floors.
Customers should be able to easily access the Wi-Fi network to enjoy high-speed Internet service, even in densely populated scenarios. Additionally, UniEuro needed to leverage the Wi-Fi network to serve the enterprise itself. Accurate STA locations, device models, and other information gathered from the Wi-Fi network would be integrated with a professional third-party retail analysis platform for customer archiving and analysis. Based on the analysis result, UniEuro could trace the efficiency of marketing strategies and advertisements. The Wi-Fi network would become an online-offline integrated marketing tool as well as an open platform, which could be integrated with professional third-party retail analysis platforms.
Changing Free Wi-Fi Service from a Burden to a VAS
After intense research, Huawei’s commercial Wi-Fi solution for shopping malls and supermarkets was selected as the Wi-Fi network provider for UniEuro. Huawei won UniEuro’s trust for its high-performance APs, professional automated network planning tool, eSight location engine, and open architecture.
• Huawei’s high-performance indoor AP5030DN access point supports the HD Boost feature that allows customers to easily access the Wi-Fi network in densely populated areas.
• Huawei’s professional 3D network planning tool can avoid coverage holes and signal interference between APs on the same floor and neighboring floors. This significantly optimizes access experience in shopping malls and supermarkets and lays a solid foundation for accurate STA location.
• Huawei’s solution allows for easy advertisement customization and push on customizable portal pages to maximize the value of entrance advertisements.
• Huawei’s unique eSight PAIRS wireless location solution implements accurate STA locations for customers. Location information is transferred to a third-party professional retail analysis platform through Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). The platform creates archives for customer location information, enabling UniEuro to learn customer preferences and perform Big Data collection and analysis. Based on online and offline promotion advertisement, UniEuro can develop more effective marketing activities, greatly improving advertising ROI.
Huawei’s commercial Wi-Fi solution for shopping malls and supermarkets improves advertisement delivery efficiency and marketing quality. Free Wi-Fi service has become a marketing tool with a high ROI, evolving from a burden to a Value-Added Service (VAS) for UniEuro.