Even though business has shifted from brick-and-mortar to online, many retail stores are beginning to realize that optimizing the in-store shopping experience is just as important as the online experience. Providing a pleasant and unique in-store visit could mean a direct increase in online sales. Therefore, retail stores now, more than ever, need to ensure the customer experience takes precedence.

Verizon knows just how important secure, consistent connectivity is to keeping customers happy at in-store locations. That’s why when looking for new routers for their 1,700 retail stores, they needed to make sure they had 4G LTE Advanced available for backup connectivity. They also needed wired and wireless networks to work simultaneously for situations like updating sales associate tablets. This meant it was important to find an agile solution that could bring up stores more quickly and efficiently.

The Solution

Cisco’s account team worked with the Verizon team that was responsible for testing various routers. They considered multiple options around SD-WAN and, in the end, chose Cisco’s 1000 Series Integrated Services Routers (ISR 1000). The decision to go with the ISR 1000s was based on several factors: throughput, stability and security.

“Cisco ISR 1000 represents the latest generation of LTE technology, providing up to twice the throughput that was available previously,” advises Martinez who is responsible for Verizon store network connectivity. “Working with our Verizon Wireless Private Network, the combination provides the backup solution needed for stable performance along with encrypted VPN traffic for strong security.”

The Outcome

Verizon is now able to use zero-touch deployment and dynamic multipoint VPN (DMVPN) in order to remain transport agnostic. “The stores can power up the ISR 1000 and it is automatically configured without a technician’s involvement,” explains McDonald. ISR 1000s combine WAN, comprehensive security, wired and wireless access in a single high-performance platform:

Throughput – A multicore architecture leverages higher data plane performance, enabling high availability for network services and advanced connectivity options like 4G LTE Advanced and 802.11ac Wifi.

Stability – The first fixed-configuration router with Cisco’s trusted IOS® XE software, ISR 1000s allow Verizon to utilize one operating system for consistency and visibility, making deployment and manageability easy across all retail stores.

Security – Integrated Cisco Umbrella, Encrypted Traffic Analytics, and advanced threat defense provide comprehensive security for all devices on the network. To manage its security needs, Verizon required segmentation of the Wi-Fi network from the network running store operations. The ISR 1000 is able to act as a ‘software firewall’ and protect the traffic running on different networks.

As Verizon continues to set the standard for wireless communications, it continues to stay focused on exceeding retail customer expectations. The new Cisco and Verizon solution is a critical part of the shopping experience strategy.

“Our job is to limit disruptions,” says Malcolm. “If our primary network goes down, the Wireless Private Network and Cisco ISR 1000 will step in so that the store can continue to process transactions and customers will continue to experience a positive shopping experience. No one should notice—and that’s a good thing.”

Read the entire Verizon and Cisco success story.

Learn more about Cisco 1000 Series Integrated Services Routers.

I’d love to hear more about how Cisco routers have brought a better user and customer experience to your business. Leave a comment below and connect with me on LinkedIn!


Cathy Karaguez

Product Marketing Manager