Guests expect to remain online while moving between hotels, outdoors, restaurants, bars and transport hubs— so it’s no surprise that high-performance Wi-Fi is still a top driver of guest satisfaction. However, repeated authentication at each Wi-Fi network is frustrating, particularly for loyalty guests at a hotel chain. In 2019, loyalty-related bookings accounted for more than 50 percent of the total hotel bookings in the U.S, and 57 percent of consumers spend more on brands to which they are loyal.
The guest experience can be improved by automatically and securely connecting devices to the internet as soon as they are within reach of any Wi-Fi network in the brand, or any number of partner venues that the property chooses to add to the network. Moreover, if the guest chooses to return to a hotel, or any hotel within the chain, their experience is further enhanced if they can be remembered and automatically connected, similar to cellular network roaming.
Technology is available today that makes this possible. Already with proven use cases in cities, railway stations, chain stores, coffee chains and more, Passpoint is a mature industry standard defined by the Wi-Fi Alliance to authenticate and connect guests to a Wi-Fi network, delivering a safe and continuous connected journey that avoids open, unsecure networks.
Using Passpoint in a hotel environment, guests do not need to find and authenticate with a network each time they visit. By adding a profile to their device, it is effectively remembered by the network, login is streamlined, and returning visitors are automatically connected on each visit.
Passpoint provides hotel guests with a Wi-Fi connection that is consistent at every property on a brand’s network, without any user interaction. Traffic sent over the wireless infrastructure is encrypted, and brands can also enable seamless roaming at other third party venues.
The platform can incentivize loyalty members by offering increased Wi-Fi speeds based on accomplishing higher hotel loyalty tiers. The brand can also provide members with promotions based on the guest’s proximity to the bar or spa or while at the pool.
It brings additional methods for the brand to market to the loyalty member by providing them timely promotions based on the guest’s proximity to the bar or spa or while at the pool. Similarly, hotel marketing departments will have an entirely new set of analytics to measure and monitor, such as properties visited by specific loyalty tier or areas in the hotels frequently visited versus other areas of the property not visited.
Passpoint can be helpful for brands who want to offer a predictable, consistent experience to guests at every property in the portfolio. They walk through the door and are online, immediately feeling at home. The solution also delivers increased enterprise-level security, as well as new revenue opportunities and partnerships. For example, hotels can add third-party venues that will add value to the guest’s experience to their Passpoint network, like a local coffee shop, public transport provider or the hotel shuttle. This encourages guest engagement and amenities upsell.
By integrating Passpoint with brand loyalty apps travelers have a unique incentive to join the brand’s loyalty program and download its mobile app. This mobile-first approach also allows the hotel to attach guest services, such as a digital key, mobile check in/out, rewards and more for new levels of personalization in a contactless environment.
Speleos Dravillas is the chief revenue officer at Nomadix.
This article originally appeared on Hotel Management.