Modern customers no longer feel like complimenting businesses on providing free Wi-Fi; they have grown to think of it as their inherent right rather than a privilege. Wi-Fi is available everywhere you go: you will get it at a local cafe, your dentist's office, and even on the bus. Giving clients a wireless Internet connection access is an easy way for businesses to promote loyalty and boost revenues.
With such a great demand for quality and reliable Wi-Fi solutions, you might want to know what it takes to start a hotspot business of your own. Here are some suggestions you will find helpful, but before that, let us take a closer look at what a Wi-Fi hotspot is, how it works, and whether or not it is safe to use.
A Wi-Fi Hotspot: The Basics
A Wi-Fi hotspot is a physical venue where individuals can connect to the Internet through a wireless local area network (also, WLAN) made accessible via a specialized device – router – connected to an ISP. Wi-Fi hotspots have a varying range, strength, and speed. However, the operating principle of a hotspot found in public places is the same as a private, home-based Wi-Fi network.
The three most popular and commonly used types of Wi-Fi hotspots are:
Public hotspots: these are public places, like retail outlets or coffee shops, where you can access the Internet that is enabled by Wi-Fi, usually for free.
Mobile hotspots: individual users can create this type of Wi-Fi connection by enabling a respective feature on their phones that allows using cellular data to establish a mobile hotspot.
Pre-paid hotspots: pre-paid Wi-Fi hotspots are comparable to mobile ones but have one key difference: they limit the amount of cellular data you may send over the Internet connection.
Of the three different Wi-Fi hotspot types discussed above, mobile and pre-paid hotspots are the safest to use. As for public Wi-Fi hotspots, it is wiser not to use such a connection to do anything that could expose your secure personal data to attacks from potential wrongdoers lurking nearby.
Launching a Wi-Fi Hotspot Business: Best Tips and Practices
Setting up a hotspot business can be done anyplace, even from your living room. For many aspiring entrepreneurs, it is a preferred option as you do not need permission to install the equipment and will be able to keep the profits to yourself. The cost of equipment and requirements for technical knowledge needed have decreased dramatically in recent years, making this type of business easy to start.
If you are looking to get into the wireless networking industry and begin offering reliable and affordable hotspot solutions, you will find the following tips valuable:
1. Aim for smaller customers. Engaging with smaller organizations at a local level will let you approach the owners directly and look into the entrails of this business properly.
2. Choose entry-level Wi-Fi products over enterprise-grade ones to minimize hardware installation/maintenance costs and ensure decent performance.
3. Go for locations with one or two access points. Such places usually do not require adding many devices and have minimal wireless interference, which will simplify installation.
4. Consider going after locations that already have ADSL/fiber connectivity. These clients are easier to persuade to buy Wi-Fi hotspot services from you, as there are no additional expenses by way of broadband connectivity costs.
5. Offer a simple wireless billing solution. An efficient WiFi billing system like Hydra Billing will offer you a handy and easy-to-use method to charge for your varied wireless service offerings.
Why Use Hydra Billing?
However, you choose to charge your customers to use your hotspot services, you need a way to keep the billing process as simple and friendly as possible. A reliable and feature-rich WiFi billing software product like Hydra will guarantee that all your invoices are sent out and paid in time.
While there are plenty of decent WiFi billing solutions out there, very few of them can boast the same robust variety of excellent features as Hydra wireless billing software. These include:
· Customizable billing and invoicing.
· Recurring subscription management.
· Automated dunning management.