Guest WiFi Email Capture: Why and How To Use It with UniFi

Academy 14 minute read 5th October 2020

Providing free guest WiFi has become a necessity in any modern hospitality venue. With over 93% of venues offering free WiFi, a free connection is no longer a selling point. It’s expected of you. So what’s the advantage of allowing guest access to your network? The wonderful world of guest WiFi email capture.

This guide explains why you should capture guest email addresses, what it is, and how to do it.


What Is Guest WiFi Email Capture?

This term refers to using a guest wifi network to gather or capture email addresses. This is a form of data capture used in WiFi marketing by businesses. You’ll often see this used by hospitality businesses like restaurants, cafes, hotels, and bars.

Are you curious as to how this works?

Basically, a business owner sets up a free guest wifi that’s open to the public. They can either protect it with a password or not. Then, when guests log in, they go through something called a captive portal.

This could be something simple. Like a splash page for the business or a pop-up asking them to agree to the terms of service.

What this captive portal does, however, is gather guest data. Depending on the business’s wants and settings, it can collect information about guest location, internet usage, or email. To obtain guest email addresses, the portal prompts users to input their address for internet access. That captive portal then stores their information.

From there, the person can use the wifi, and the business gains valuable customer data.


Why Businesses Should Use Guest WiFi Email Capture

Here are a few reasons why you should consider collecting data about your visitors, including guests’ email addresses.

Understand Your Audience

To have a successful business, you need to know who you’re audience is and what they want. Capturing emails and other WiFi marketing database options give you unparalleled access to your customers and their behaviors. You don’t have to stop at email collection. You can also gather mobile phone numbers, location information, and demographic data.

Email Marketing

One of the biggest benefits of guest WiFi email capture is how it feeds directly into email marketing. So many folks these days only focus their efforts on the social media marketing platform. But Email marketing remains one of the most simple, effective, and cost-friendly ways to reach clients.

When you collect emails, you’re instantly growing your email subscriber lists. You now have more verified emails to send marketing messages to, including information about deals, events, and business changes.

Increase Online Reviews

Yelp and Google reviews are essential to hospitality businesses. Think about it. Before booking a hotel or making a dinner reservation, you go online and see if other people like it. You want to visit a place with stellar feedback and loads of real-time reviews.

This is another place where a free wifi setup comes in handy. When visitors use your guest network, you can set your external captive portal to prompt them to leave a review. The portal then redirects users to an online review platform.

Boost Your Social Media Following

Yes, WiFi marketing can work to support your other marketing efforts.

Like using an external portal server for reviews, you can use it to boost your social media. Instead of redirecting users to your web page when they join your network, redirect them to your social profiles.

This way, you increase your exposure and maximize the probability that they’ll hit “follow.”

Create Loyalty Opportunities

To this point, we’ve talked a lot about gaining new customers, but what about retaining them? Customer loyalty is just as important to small businesses. Set up a loyalty reward system that gives points every time someone visits your establishment and joins the WiFi.


Or, combine your loyalty program with your email marketing campaigns via guest wifi email capture. When you capture guest email addresses, you can also gather other data about them, like how often they visit. You can then use this information to enter your email collection and segment your customers.


Can You Use UniFi Guest Networks To Capture Emails?

No, you can’t use UniFi guest networks to capture guest emails. At least, not on its own.

UniFi is a WiFi network service. Some homes use it. But it’s mostly popular with small businesses that aren’t ready to make the leap to a full-fledged enterprise network. It includes routers, UniFi controller devices, wireless access points, access control products, etc.

For venues with Ubiquiti hardware, you’ll know that while the UniFi guest WiFi options are great, they’re basic. They lack the powerful WiFi marketing features that a modern venue needs.

With a UniFi wifi network, you get:

However, you miss out on all the data capture benefits we mentioned earlier. However, if you already have UniFi, don’t fret. Keep reading for a way to kick your existing connection up a notch.


How To Level Up Your UniFi Networks for Guest WiFi Email Capture

Beambox provides a straightforward UniFi integration to level up your free WiFi network and start building your guest database. Out of the box, you will:

  • Capture guest emails and grow your marketing database.
  • Increase your social media followers with WiFi prompts.
  • Send branded email blasts that bring in business.
  • 10x your positive TripAdvisor reviews on autopilot.
  • Use email marketing automation to increase loyalty.

Customizing Your UniFi Portal Login

Part of using Beambox’s guest wifi email capture technology is gaining the ability to customize your UniFi portal login. This means changing what your external portal looks like when clients join your network.

Our 5-step WiFi setup enables you to manage, brand and customize your guest WiFi experience anytime. When you make a change, your UniFi networks will instantly update without delay. Need to add a new promotion to your WiFi login? No problem, you can edit it from anywhere, instantly.

Guest WiFi Email Capture Why and How To Use It with UniFi

When guests connect to your WiFi, they can join using your email form or through social logins. Social logins enable guests to connect using their existing social media accounts quickly. Plus, you’ll still capture email addresses for your database along with information like a customer’s full name, gender, age, etc.

You can also completely customize the email form to capture the data that matters most. Select from our standard fields or add custom fields to collect bespoke guest data.

  • Full name
  • Email address
  • Phone number
  • Gender
  • Country
  • Date of birth
  • + Add any custom fields

Organising your form fields

On top of that, the email form will verify that the mailbox exists. If it doesn’t, the form will prompt the guest to re-enter their email. That means no more dead-end emails cluttering up your database.

When it comes to data capture, legal compliance in both data protection and marketing regulations is critical. All of our WiFi logins are pro-actively compliant in all markets we operate within, including Europe and the US.

Integrating With Your Existing UniFi Controller

The Beambox + UniFi integration is super simple to set up and takes just a few minutes. All you have to do is enter your controller URL. Then, our integrator will set up your guest network for you.

From there on, you can manage all aspects of your WiFi login directly from your Beambox account. And just like that, you’ve added guest wifi email capture to your UniFi system.

Guest WiFi Marketing With Beambox

If you want to add guest WiFi marketing to your business plan, check out Beambox. You can use it with or without UniFi networks to gain valuable customer data, insights, and marketing information.

Additionally, it automatically boosts your customers’ experience at your establishment. Free WiFi means they can browse their phones, work remotely, or entertain themselves while enjoying your service. Ready to grow your business? Start your Beambox free trial today!

Level up your UniFi networks with WiFi Marketing

Beambox helps businesses like yours grow with data capture, marketing automation and reputation management.

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Grow your business and customer loyalty with guest WiFi!

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