Consumers are more tech-savvy than ever before, which has a trickle-down effect into business operations. The lines between online and physical stores are blurring, with customers demanding omnichannel experiences that transcend platforms.

In response, retailers and other business owners are more readily deploying new technologies—such as mobile point of sale, interactive displays and digital signage. However, these implemenations have larger-reaching effects to businesses’ network infrastructures.

In this post, we outline three key network considerations that will help you support omnichannel marketing and centralized data analysis.

Identify Current and Future Applications

To design a scalable network, organizations must first understand what applications will be need to be supported. Make a list of all network-connected platforms that serve the store or enterprise. This may include, but is not limited to, video surveillance, point-of-sale terminals and customer Wi-Fi.

Consider both current technologies and those your organization may like to implement in the future. This will allow you to build a flexible network that can scale with your requirements, and support your business over the long term.

Evaluate Organization-wide Bandwidth Demands

Bandwidth is constantly increasing, as more network-connected platforms are added and existing systems grow in sophistication. With applications identified, look next at bandwidth requirements for each, and delivery methods.

Instead of relying on legacy, cost-prohibitive connectivity options, you may want to consider new approaches that deliver better bandwidth performance at a lower cost. Examples include broadband bonding instead of a single high-capacity circuit or an IPSec virtual private network (VPN) instead of multiprotocol label switching (MPLS).

Pinpoint Consolidation Opportunities

For improved integration, data reporting and investment return, proactively evaluate opportunities to move legacy systems onto the network. Transition phone systems to voice over Internet protocol (VoIP); upgrade security systems to eliminate dependences on PSTN lines. Having all operations on the same network allows you to more readily assess performance, remove complexities and pool resources.

For more on the how to create a secure, scalable network infrastructure, download our whitepaper, “LP Meets IP for Complete Managed Business Infrastructure, Security and Intelligence.”

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