Use Google Wifi to take your network to the next level!

As a merchant, the last thing you need in your day is for a critical business component to drop its connection with your point-of-sale, bringing sales to a halt. Pressures mount quickly, seconds feel like hours, and employees start doing their best to stall, or potentially even worse, “solve” the problem themselves. All the while, customers are staring, the line is building, and everyone is losing patience. It’s not long before rock bottom hits, and embarrassment sets in as customers are asked to pay in cash as as your your point of sale takes a nap.

And if you’re not sweating things out at the Register, it won’t take long for you to find out about the issue via the ShopKeep Pocket app attached to your hip, as you do a double take to ensure you’re looking at your hourly sales summary drop and not mistaking it for your Bitcoin account.

If this sounds like an all-too-familiar situation, we’re here to help! We want to set you up for success with ShopKeep and in a modern business, that starts with making sure that you have a reliable internet network.

Whether it’s keeping your walls up or your point-of-sale online and taking payments, you need a strong foundation. For years, the conventional wisdom on reliable networking has been to use as much directly-wired technology as possible because wireless technology can often be the weakest link in a local network, suffering from interference, accidentally jumping to other networks, range issues, and general physical limitations.

But now, with advances in wireless networking technology, we’re happy to encourage more wireless freedom with a mesh wireless network that will cost you less than your last outage, and strengthen your foundation to improve and distribute connectivity evenly throughout your business.

To start with, let’s do a quick assessment of your network right now:

  1. Are you using the standard equipment provided by your Internet Service Provider (ISP) for your local network and to to distribute wifi?
  2. Is your wireless router older than a few years?
  3. Are you using only one wireless router to reach your entire floor plan and extend through walls?
  4. Are you using network extenders or converting wired components into wireless by using network extenders?
  5. Did you set up your own local area network?
  6. Do you know how to log in to your router as the administrator and would you consider yourself able to troubleshoot networking issues?
  7. Are you running non-ShopKeep components on your network, or worse, a guest network on the same router?

You’ve likely answered “Yes” to many of these questions, but even if you answered “Yes” to just one of them, then you’re flirting with the limitations of outdated and complex technology or simply pushing the limits of physics with a non-physically-distributed network. Even the best of us get beaten by the complexity of setting up and troubleshooting our own local networks, but luckily it doesn’t have to be this difficult.

That’s why we are excited to tell you that ShopKeep now fully supports Google Wifi! Google Wifi is a powerful, modern networking product that works in any networking environment, from complex setups to simple extensions focused on a few core components.

Too many times we’ve seen a floor plans like the one below with an ISP-provided wireless router placed in a back office, where the internet line originates, and heard consistent complaints about poor service at the register. As you can see from our simulation, one point of access will only extend so far and your connection will weaken as you get further away, causing regular issues of spottiness and complete drops of service.

Google Wifi Blueprint

Setting up ShopKeep on Google Wifi solves these problems and it’s a breeze to do, even for the non-technical. Setup is controlled from a mobile app that guides you through a wizard to position each wifi point for the strongest signal throughout your business. Google’s networking algorithm creates one seamless wireless mesh network that maintains its strength as more wifi points are added, unlike networking extension options of the past and what your ISP will recommend, both of which are complicated to get working right and will drop power on each hop.

We recommend starting with a 3-pack of access points and adding additional access points only if you need them. Only your primary point requires a wired internet connection, and extending your network with each additional point is as easy as plugging it in to power. Try one near your register or kitchen printers, and hook your ethernet-only wired components right in to the network! Need more ports? Buy the Netgear GS305 switch to allow for more hard-wired components.

Your network is your foundation in a modern business and we think that Google Wifi creates a powerful and reliable network that is sure to strengthen your business. The early adopters of Google Wifi on ShopKeep have been super happy with it, so we encourage you to join them in taking control of your network to keep everything connected and the sales flowing.

Hank Fichtner

Hank Fichtner is a Sr. Product Manager at ShopKeep with a focus on the register app, hardware, and payments. He applies his entrepreneurial background and passion for technology to empowering small businesses to compete with big-box stores.