As brick and mortar businesses transform themselves in the new digital economy, Wi-Fi is becoming a fundamental building block for success. Wi-Fi is ubiquitous and customers are usually eager to take advantage of available Wi-Fi connectivity. It’s a perfect opportunity to unlock the full potential of Wi-Fi technology as a powerful strategic marketing tool.

That’s where Cisco and Cloud4Wi come in. Together, they are using Wi-Fi analytics and customer data to transform business models and deliver better customer experiences. Cloud4wi’s Volare, the industry-leading location analytics and marketing platform, easily integrates with the Cisco Meraki Wi-Fi infrastructure. It adds an application layer on top of the network enabling businesses to guide customers to register on their welcome portal, using e-mail or social media. This serves as a “digital front door.” On subsequent visits to any location worldwide, customers automatically connect to the Wi-Fi network, presenting the business with a broad range of opportunities to gain insights and to engage.

The Cloud4Wi platform enables five powerful functions critical to the success of today’s digital businesses:

  • Manage the digital front door on customers’ mobile devices,
  • Digitally on-board customers for enhanced CRM capabilities
  • Collect unique customer insights for off-line attribution
  • Facilitate personalized experiences
  • Integrate with existing technology infrastructure, whether mobile app and/or IT systems such as data management platforms or marketing automation platforms


Working Together for Customer Success

Let’s look at three examples of how businesses have benefited from Cisco integrated with Volare, the platform by Cloud4Wi. In these projects the Wi-Fi infrastructure is based the Cisco Meraki cloud networking solution.

1. The Prada Group personalizes customer experience with Wi-Fi

The Prada Group is one of the world leaders in the luxury goods sector where it operates with the Prada, Miu Miu, Church’s, and Car Shoe brands in the design, production, and distribution of luxury handbags, leather goods, footwear, apparel and accessories.

The Prada Group decided to deploy the Cloud4Wi platform in conjunction with Cisco Meraki across their 500 stores worldwide. With easy Internet connectivity in the stores, sales associates quickly noticed a dramatic boost in customer satisfaction, as shoppers were excited to share new purchases and shopping experiences with friends and family on social media.

The Volare platform combines online activities with in-store behavior to gain a comprehensive picture of customers and their preferences. By leveraging this information, The Prada Group can personalize the in-store customer experience using both human and digital touch. For example, sales associates can be notified when a returning shopper walks in so that they can provide better customer attention. An email or text message can also be sent to loyal shoppers when they enter a store, welcoming them back and promoting a new item they’d likely be interested in. These types of specialized services will ultimately help The Prada Group better personalize the experience for their in-store shoppers, which in turn will boost loyalty and build stronger customer relationships.

2. Lone Star Texas Grill leverages Wi-Fi analytics to optimize operations

Lone Star Texas Grill is a Texas food chain with more than twenty restaurants in Ontario, Canada.

They realized that connecting customers to fast and free Wi-Fi could help boost both dining experiences and customer satisfaction.

Volare was installed in just a few days on Lone Star’s existing Cisco Meraki Wi-Fi infrastructure, meaning that diners immediately experienced fast Wi-Fi and an effortless onboarding process.

One quick benefit produced by Volare came from the use of presence analytics to improve operations. Through the data collected, Lone Star identified traffic patterns outside the restaurant and adjusted hours of operation and staffing strategies, thus dramatically improving restaurant efficiency and profitability.

3. Gruppo FS Italiane uses Wi-Fi to create a smart station in a smart city

The Italian State Railways Group, Gruppo FS Italiane, is one of the largest industrial companies in Italy, responsible for the movement of 8,000 trains daily, with approximately 600 million passengers and 50 million tons of cargo to transport each year.

Gruppo FS Italiane decided to work with Cisco Meraki and Cloud4Wi to offer railway visitors services beyond Internet access, while at the same time collecting valuable information about them and their on-premise behavior.

The main goal of Gruppo FS Italiane is to create an open platform, so that individual railway stakeholders – law enforcement, taxis, hotels, municipality, in-station retailers, and other organizations – can tap into network insights, as well as establish their own services on the Wi-Fi network.

Cloud4Wi has been Named ISV Partner of the Year in Italy

Reflecting the great impact that Cloud4wi has made in partnering with Cisco to drive business transformation, Cloud4Wi has been recognized as Cisco’s Independent Software Vendor (ISV) Partner of the Year in Italy. Cisco unveiled the winners during the Italian Partner Dinner that took place last month in Milan.

The examples above are just a few of the opportunities presented by our partnership. Wherever customers bring their phones in a physical space, there is an opportunity to gain insight and to engage them in their journey.  Whether it’s retail, restaurants, transportation, smart cities, finance or corporate offices, a business can leverage Wi-Fi plus a location and marketing platform to accelerate digital transformation.

About the authors: Enrico Mercadante is leader of Cisco’s Innovation, Architecture & Digital Transformation team in Italy and Andrea Calcagno is Chairman, CEO and Co-Founder, Cloud4Wi




Enrico Mercadante

Innovation Lead

Architecture & Digital Transformation, Italy