Up Customer Satisfaction the Wireless Way

In today’s interactive environment, maintaining an engaging customer connection is essential for ensuring high-levels of customer service delivery—and satisfaction. Gone are the days of rigid communications, latency, and slow responses. To enable more dynamic and seamless communications, many companies are turning to wireless LANs to instantly connect, engage, and win customers. 

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Harnessing Communications to Create the Essential Business Buzz
Making customers happy is important for any business. According to a recent poll , small and mid-sized businesses especially feel that attracting customers is their number one challenge. This is followed by managing their IT costs. But how can SMBs attract and retain customers. One way is to deliver seamless communications to improve customer engagement and to maintain an enduring connection

By utilizing today's multimedia video and data communications – on top of voice – SMBs can serve customers at unprecedented speeds and boost satisfaction and sales. Mobile devices, cloud services, and social media let a new generation of staff deal more effectively with customers - from anywhere and at any time.

Reaching Greater Business Heights with WLAN
Many SMBs are improving their infrastructure and equipment. In fact, up to 47 percent of small businesses would rather invest in their business now for long-term gains than keep money in the bank for a rainy day. As a result, many offices have put up basic IT systems such as a fixed local area network (LAN) to enable Internet communications.

However to further improve communications; they should consider deploying a wireless local area network (WLAN). This delivers more flexibility—without being tethered around a fixed point—and lets you experience:

Infuse supreme efficiency across your entire company:
Discover greater flexibility during customer encounters. Now staff can check emails, use applications, access videos, and even answer customer calls from anywhere in the office. Studies estimate SMBs can save up to 3.3 hours per week by responding to customers promptly. This time saved can be used to deliver an even better experience and service to customers
Make it easy for your IT to manage connections:
  Adding or removing new connections is now simpler. For example, if a new or temporary staff joins the company, all your IT team needs to do is to set up a new account. No extra hardware are required. And when he or she leaves, just delete the account.

Furthermore, a WLAN enables staff to improve their interaction with customers by maintaining contact wherever they are in the office. As long as staff computing devices are equipped with powerful wireless transmitters, there are almost no limits to the level of customer interaction that can be supported. This includes IMs, VoIP conversations, and dynamic video conferencing.

Four Steps to Deploying an Effective WLAN
However, WLANs must be properly managed for the benefits to outweigh the costs. Building a reliable WLAN does not have to be difficult and the payoff is tremendous. Here are four steps to ensure a successful WLAN deployment:


Define your office communication locations
Plan and locate the vital areas of communications. This might include conference rooms, employee desks, and common areas. How about providing guest network access to visiting clients?  These are critical questions to ask to eliminate 'spotty' WLAN capabilities, and to ensure your company maximizes its wireless coverage.

2. Ascertain the amount of multi-media communications
Determine the amount of multimedia communications that will traverse across your wireless network. More multimedia traffic means higher bandwidth is needed. Does your company staff transfer large amounts of video and other multi-media files on a daily basis? Or does your WLAN support less bandwidth-intensive emails and text documents? Take these into account when deploying a wireless network. Additionally, configure your wireless LAN to the Wireless N and the 5GHz band for minimal radio traffic interference. This will allow you to support the best reception and bandwidth for a seamless multimedia experience.
3. Control IT budgets with better scalability
Select a WLAN solution that can be scaled easily for future growth. Your business is not going to be stagnant. When it expands, your WLAN should be able to accommodate more traffic and users. To maximize your IT budgets, ensure that you can add WLAN access points easily without expensive hardware investments and manual configuration. “Hybrid” WLAN solutions can help in this area. "Hybrid" LAN nodes can act as access points (APs) or controllers at the same time. This allows your company to easily integrate new WLAN nodes into your existing current WLAN. What's more, your company can change and divert WLAN coverage at ease to different areas of the office—should the need arise.
4. Protect your business with information security
Information security is paramount. Be sure that your WLAN solution comes with the best security protocols. With more cyber-attacks making the headlines, you should not take any chances. Key security protocols include Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP), Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) and Wi-Fi Protected Access II (WPA 2). These protocols stop unauthorized users, termed 'Rogue APs', and cyber-attacks from encroaching your confidential WLAN.

The New Wireless SMB
New voice, video, and data transmission are integral for businesses to succeed today. SMBs will be left behind if they do not enable seamless communications. Legacy wired Ethernet networks will fall short in enabling a new wave of productivity; and many businesses are turning to WLAN deployments for more seamless communications, enhanced flexibility, and better staff as well as customer interaction. Find out more.

Note: Yahoo! Small Business: Small Business Owners Share Their Biggest Challenges
  Brother Small Business Survey: SMB Owners Prefer to Invest Now. March 10, 2011
  Technology Report, Volume 311: Top 5 Communications Pain Points for SMBs