Secure site connectivity in retail
Be it in brick-and-mortar retail, petrol stations, pharmacies, car dealerships, hardware stores, or bakery chains: Retailers today must meet the increasing expectations of their customers at the point of sale to be able to measure up against highly competitive online retailers. At the same time, there is high cost pressure, there are growth pressures on the market, and an all-round shortage of skilled workers.
LANCOM networking solutions for chain stores are field tested and address 100% of the problems faced by IT managers. Learn how to make your branch infrastructure scalable, predictable, and trustworthy.
Requirements for chain stores
As the IT manager for a series of chain stores, you are well aware of what your customers, branch employees, branch management, and the branch headquarters expect:
- ... that they can log into the Wi-Fi hotspot automatically and securely after agreeing to the T&Cs once.
- ... that any tracking data is handled confidentially and in compliance with the GDPR.
- ... that they can pay in cash or by card.
- ... they receive current offers on their smartphone when entering the store.
- ... that they can redeem their bonus points at any time.
- ... that the items they are looking for will always be in the same place.
Branch employees expect...
- ... the checkout system to work.
- ... their devices to have access to the central merchandise management system
- ... that inventories can be taken via the barcode scanner.
- … that the surveillance system and alarms work properly.
- … that the latest prices are displayed on the price tags.
Branch management expects…
- … that the IT is managed centrally, so that no in-depth IT know-how is required at their branch.
- … that the systems are not disturbed if the Internet goes down.
- … that data can only be viewed with authorization and cannot be misused by third parties.
- … that the investment in the network infrastructure is long-lasting and is also ready for future applications.
- … that modern digital marketing activities, such as discount campaigns or purchase recommendations, can be implemented directly via the customer's smartphone.
- … that they can optimize their range of goods with business intelligence solutions such as route-tracking analysis.
The store headquarters expects…
- … that all its locations are securely networked with each other and with the central merchandise management system without interruption.
- … that all data exchange is protected against unauthorized access and that sensitive data is processed in compliance with GDPR.
- … that business processes are not endangered at any time by connection failures.
- … that it can control price adjustments, marketing activities, warehouse information, etc. centrally and roll them out everywhere at the same time.
- … that important reports such as sales figures can always be communicated without problems.
- … that it can transparently access important information on the status quo of certain (special) promotions at any time.
- … that its infrastructure is worth the investment and is powerful, durable, and flexible enough to support new technologies and applications.
- … that it is not restricted in its ability to expand and that the IT network grows in a scalable manner.
In order to meet these expectations at all branch sites and to smoothly implement the required applications, the essential basis is a professional network infrastructure. Your big advantage when planning branch networks: The individual branches are almost identical in terms of floor plan, equipment, and digital applications. What this means specifically is:
The “experience” is equally good for customers and employees at all branches.
In the best case, a quality customer Wi-Fi results in an excellent Internet connection and useful offers for your customers – but it also exposes data that is worth protecting: Using the SSIDs of the customer smartphones and their communication with the Wi-Fi access points in your store, for example, the time of arrival, length of stay, and movement pattern / behavior on your premises can be identified and, with a few additional data from Internet providers, clearly assigned to specific individuals.
By using a LANCOM network, you show your customers that you handle this data confidentially and in compliance with the GDPR. For us, backdoor-free hardware and software made-in-Germany, secure cloud hosting in Germany, the highest level of compliance, and a high data protection standard are all part of a secure infrastructure. So your customers go shopping with a good feeling and you are guaranteed to be on the legally compliant side.
Identically structured stores offer you a great advantage as the IT manager for networking retail branches. The network design of an individual branch can be adopted 1:1 for all other branches. What you need for this is a network infrastructure that adapts flexibly to your needs, but always feels the same. This is where LANCOM Systems comes in as your partner.
Setting up a functioning branch network does not take much hardware. For small branches with few digital applications, such as a petrol station, all you need may be a router with optional Wi-Fi. In larger retail stores with many requirements and end users, you are already well equipped with a router or secure SD-WAN gateway, a switch, and a suitable number of access points for the premises.
The individual branches, regardless of their size, are classically connected to the head office via a secure VPN – and your branch network is complete.
You need help choosing the right product for your branch network?
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Reliable Wi-Fi for a modern shopping experience
Seamless, powerful, and stable Wi-Fi coverage throughout the branch for the use of modern logistics and sales technologies such as barcode scanners, self-service checkouts, and self-scanning hand scanners (self-checkout (SCO)), payment and bonus point apps, and much more.
Electronic shelf labels (ESL)
Instead of paper labels, use ePaper displays that are suitable for daylight and have a long battery life!
Prices, article descriptions, and even bar or QR codes can be updated at any time, individually and centrally from the merchandise management system by wireless – without interference on a single shared infrastructure.
More about the LANCOM Wireless ePaper displays and digital signage
Secure connection to and cooperation with credit institutions
Protect all EC cash transactions and your cash-balance transfer with the highest standard of security!
For customers, you can securely implement practical cash-back cooperations with different banks, where customers pay more than the value of the goods via card or app and receive cash from your checkout system in return.
A guest hotspot for the smooth functioning of apps
In your store, customers don't have to worry about a loss of mobile coverage.
A secure Wi-Fi hotspot is easily implemented with LANCOM and opens up many opportunities for personalized target marketing via the customer's smartphone.
Shop-in-shop cooperation made easy
Sometimes your offerings and those of another retailer complement each other perfectly. So why not go for a shop-in-shop cooperation?
LANCOM shop-in-shop infrastructures are securely isolated from each other, installed quickly and with few conflicts, and they ensure constant, high-performance access for the internal shop.
Hybrid working in retail
Black Friday, Easter, the pre-Christmas period – demand sometimes peaks and creates new challenges for personnel.
There are also clever solutions for hybrid working in presence-based retail, e.g. when looking after the online shop, accounting, organizing orders, and much more.
At the heart of your store connectivity:
The LANCOM Management Cloud
The structure and commissioning of branch networks is one thing; the handling, configuration, and maintenance is another. There are many digital applications that have to react quickly and flexibly to new requirements. The LANCOM Management Cloud puts an end to difficult-to-manage, highly complex networks:
Make your branch an agile "SD-Branch" by means of central orchestration of all network components.
Agile, flexible, and future-proof
Auto-configuration and zero-touch deployment implement a centralized, automated rollout with maximum security. Zero-touch deployment – assuming a functional Internet connection is in place – means that commissioning a device merely involves mounting it on location and connecting it up.
Thanks to auto-configuration per software-defined networking (SDN), the network administrator does not need to physically touch the device. It is immediately ready to operate.
High quality Wi-Fi is essential to your retail business processes. Handheld scanners, apps, digital price tags – it's not just your store's reputation that is at stake, but rather a functioning work environment. The LANCOM Management Cloud and the powerful, “thinking” access points from LANCOM assure you of the best possible Wi-Fi at all times.
The unique self-learning automation solution LANCOM Active Radio Control 2.0 fully optimizes Wi-Fi installations based on real usage data and minimizes the effort and cost of Wi-Fi setup and operation. A must-have that is second to none for those managing a large amount of stores!
Intelligent digital retail networking
"In recent years, shopping has become faster, contactless and, above all, is increasingly digital. [...] At the same time, it is clear that the classic retail store is still the most important touchpoint for a personal, high-quality shopping experience. To manage the balancing act between stationary and digital sales channels, or even in store and online trade, what we need more than ever is a profitable symbiosis of networking solutions that are specifically tailored to the diverse requirements across the retail sector. From chain stores and franchisers to shop-in-shop operators, it is important to cost-effectively plan individual retail networks and roll them out as widely and as quickly as possible."
LANCOM White Paper about smart retail infrastructures and network requirements
Central management for your branch network
In brief: You decide how you want to set up your network, create the framework centrally, and apply the configuration or software updates to all devices in the network, wherever they may be, completely automatically. The LANCOM Management Cloud handles the network management for all branches, all of the security mechanisms such as network separation, role and rights systems, as well as 24/7 monitoring including the alerting feature. Not only is this easy on your nerves; it saves you time and hard cash as well.
For a deeper dive into LANCOM's SD-Branch solutions, visit our solution website:
Central decisions implemented at all branches in real time
Virtualize the entire functionality and network infrastructure of your central site and all of your branches, and manage everything from a central site – routing, IT security, switching and Wi-Fi – all centrally controlled via the LANCOM Management Cloud. Thanks to zero-touch functions, one-click security, and 24/7 monitoring, you save the administrator a lot of time and yourself a lot of money.
Maximum scalability and future viability
Whether you operate just a few branches or several thousand: Our branch solutions are field-tested for use in scenarios of all sizes. And when more branches are added, the LANCOM network simply grows with them. We keep an eye on the future for your benefit: You will receive long lived and up-to-date technology as well as ongoing free software updates.
Highly available business processes
You have every right to expect that the Internet access that connects your merchandise-management, logistics, and in particular the payment systems is highly available, since a failure of these business processes directly results in a loss of sales. We offer you twice the security with SD-WAN gateways, which include an additional cellular backup.
Secure integration of external service providers
Be it a security company, digital signage content supplier, or a hotspot provider – many external service providers have to be integrated into a network in order to implement digital applications. With network virtualization, you integrate external service providers into your network, although thanks to strict network isolation, they can only access the network where they need to implement their application.
With LANCOM you can rely on secure and fully GDPR-compliant networking solutions. Development of the software and hardware at LANCOM Systems, as well as the manufacturing, are predominantly based in Germany, as is the network-management hosting. The company is committed to products that are free from backdoors and is a holder of the trust mark "IT Security Made in Germany" as initiated by the German Ministry of Economics.
Along with an overall portfolio that is perfectly tailored to branch networks, LANCOM offers you one thing in particular: Experience. For more than 20 years, name-worthy customers in retail have relied on LANCOM's branch networking, the professional support offered by a German manufacturer, and customer-oriented communication with the sales team.
Modern shopping experience
Your customers are digitally well connected. Show them that you are moving with the times. From visual highlights with digital price tags to professional customer hotspots, you can use LANCOM Systems to implement many aspects of your digital marketing and give your customers a modern shopping experience.