There are endless metrics that every business needs to account for these days. Figuring out which ones need to be prioritized can feel a bit overwhelming.
One of the easiest metrics to overlook is your Wi-Fi. Nevertheless, there are many valuable insights that you can mine from proper Wi-Fi data.
Below is a breakdown of why Wi-Fi metrics matter as well as which ones are worth tracking in your business.
Why Track Wi-Fi
It’s easy to justify business intelligence in most areas. Marketing requires key insights to see if promotions are effective. Website analytics can enable you to provide a high-quality customer experience. Supply chain analysis can keep products in stock at all times. Customer service feedback enables you to maintain your brand’s word-of-mouth reputation and improve both existing and future products.
When it comes to Wi-Fi, though, gathering data can feel like a waste of time. How can Wi-Fi usage help you improve your customer service or market your products better?
While it may look useless on the surface, though, there are many KPIs (key performance indicators) that you can glean from good data harvested from your Wi-Fi. This is especially true if you have a Wi-Fi option like Plume WorkPass. Cutting edge options like WorkPass remove the “black box” feel of a third-party router and give you, the business owner, greater control over your data.
When this is the case, tracking internal Wi-Fi usage can help you keep your operation running smoothly. It confirms that your employees have fast and dependable internet access. It allows your business to maintain a flexible, interconnected workforce. It can also help you see who logged onto your Wi-Fi and for how long — which has its own managerial benefits.
On the customer side of things, Wi-Fi analytics are helpful if you operate a physical business like a coffee shop, a gym, or even a grocery store. It can help you see how many customers are utilizing your Wi-Fi. You can also track how often you get repeat customers, how long they stay connected to your network, and so on.
Choosing Metrics to Track
Understanding the need to monitor Wi-Fi analytics can be a revelation. However, even then, choosing which metrics to track can be difficult. Here are two sets of metrics to consider analyzing — depending on whether you’re using Wi-Fi for internal staff or for your customers.
Monitoring Internal Wi-Fi Usage
Here are four of the best metrics to keep an eye on as employees utilize your internal network.
Bandwidth is one of the easiest and best ways to monitor your Wi-Fi. Your bandwidth is the maximum amount of transmittable data that your network can handle at any given moment.
2. Speed and Throughput
Along with your bandwidth, you’ll also want to consider your Wi-Fi’s speed. This is similar to but not the same as your bandwidth. While bandwidth measures a quantity of data at a specific moment, internet speed considers how much data is being transmitted during a certain period of time. Latency is another term for slow internet speed.
Throughput is also important to consider. Your network’s throughput is the actual amount of data that is being transferred by devices within your network. You can compare both your speed and your throughput to your bandwidth to see if your network is operating efficiently.
3. Packet Loss and Retransmission
A Wi-Fi network sends “packets” of information. Some of these are lost in transmission. At times they must be re-transmitted, as well.
If you want to understand how efficient your Wi-Fi network is operating, keep tabs on your packet loss and retransmission numbers. The former can vary, but acceptable numbers hardly go above 3%. Both rampant loss and excessive retransmission of packets can be signs of a clogged or sluggish network.
The other obvious measure of your Wi-Fi is its signal. If you have a weak or varying signal, it can hamper work and cause headaches.
Measure your network’s signal to see if it is adequate. This should include the area that it covers, its overall strength, and its consistency.
Monitoring Customer Wi-Fi Usage
Customer-facing Wi-Fi should also consider the factors above. However, while things like bandwidth and signal strength are important, you shouldn’t stop there. Here are three other metrics that you may want to track, as well.
5. Busy Hours
Your Wi-Fi provides an ideal way to consider when your store is at its busiest and when things are slow. This insight can help you adjust the size of your staff and what services are available when.
6. Customer Engagement
Many public Wi-Fi connections require going through a splash page or login portal before gaining internet access. This can be an excellent time to ask customers to engage with you.
This could be in the form of email signups, social media, or even a coupon or other promotion. Tracking how many people take advantage of this can help you monitor the effectiveness of your marketing content.
7. New and Returning Customers
One powerful Wi-Fi metric is the ability to see which customers are new and which ones are returning. This can allow you to track your customer retention rate. It can also provide an opportunity to promote different Wi-Fi login content for each segment.
A large part of this process revolves around tracking the right metrics. This enables you to see if everything is streamlined and working. It also gives you key insights into customer behavior and keeps your workforce interconnected in a productive and efficient manner.
Laila Azzahra is a professional writer and blogger that loves to write about technology, business, entertainment, science, and health.