The big five reasons to choose a business network over basic WiFi

Not standard Wi-Fi. Not a domestic router. A real, capital-N Network – purpose built to delight customers, empower employees and actively improve your business. So what’s the difference? Well, it comes down to five key factors.

Five factors

Business Networks beat basic Wi-Fi in five important ways. You can’t see, smell, hear, taste or touch them, but once you feel the difference, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without them.

01

Coverage

Whether you’re in an office, a hotel, a coffee shop or anywhere else people hang out, dead zones are a persistent headache with standard WiFi.

A business-grade Network from Meraki uses a mesh of Access Points to bring a strong, reliable Wi-Fi signal to every inch of your floor plan.

From open plan to winding corridors, inside or outside, rain or shine, business networks are effortlessly extendable to quickly and cost-effectively bring the same high-speed connectivity everywhere.

02

Capacity

It’s important to right-size the bandwidth you pay for with the bandwidth you actually use. With domestic Wi-Fi, this comes down to guesswork – and it usually leaves you out of pocket or out of data.

A business-grade Network gives you at-a-glance utilization information to see how many devices connect throughout the day, what kind of applications are running and how much data 
is being used.

This isn’t just great for right-sizing your bandwidth – it’s also a valuable insight into things like average footfall, visit length and loyalty of returning customers. So you can rightsize other things, like staff schedules, inventory, promotions and more.

03

Performance

From digital payment processing, to video calls, to the constant uploading and downloading of the endless social media scroll, every person, device and system on your premises is chewing through data by the second.

While domestic Wi-Fi parcels it all out indiscriminately, a business-grade Network gives you the control to ensure everyone gets the connectivity they need.

You can easily see which devices and applications are burning through bandwidth, and quickly set up rules and usage limits to ensure data-hungry visitors don’t slow things down for your critical systems or your other patrons.

04

Management

Managing domestic Wi-Fi is like building a house of cards in a hurricane – you don’t make any sudden moves for fear of it all crashing down.

Business-grade Networks make change easy. Whether that’s creating separate networks for your guests and employees, refreshing the passwords and landing pages for those networks, or updating your list of blocked sites – you’ve got absolute control without any additional complexity.

And with a Meraki Go business Network, all your settings and preferences are stored in the cloud 
– so you’ll never lose your configurations.

05

Security

Network security is always changing – new threats and vulnerabilities emerge every week.

Bringing domestic Wi-Fi into a business environment puts you, your employees and your customers at risk – from garden-variety spyware and credentials theft to a full-blow ransomware attack.

You don’t have to worry about that with a Meraki Go business Network. Everything – from your network hardware, to the routing that connects it all, to your customer’s end-point devices – sit safely behind a dedicated, continuously updating security gateway. Instant, plug-and-play piece of mind.

Networks to grow on

Meraki Go business Networks beat Wi-Fi at the basics – and then go way beyond them.
That’s because no two business Networks are the same. You’re not just moving from static Wi-Fi to a cookie-cutter network – this is about building the business Network designed to grow your specific business. Here are just a few possibilities:

The neighborhood 
store Network

Access points across the store keep shoppers connected in every aisle – and guest insights reveal that your coupon promotion saw a 15% uplift in footfall last month.

The small office Network

Whether you’re a three-person operation or a 25-person strong team, separate networks and rules-based prioritization keep critical tasks moving fast. So your video conferencing, file storage and guest network get the fast and reliable performance they need to work effectively.

The word-of-mouth 
bar Network

It’s a special moment when a customer becomes a regular. So when customers connect to the network for the third time, they land on a “welcome to the gang” splash page and are prompted to leave a rating on social media.

We’ll help you build your first business Network

Designing your first Network is easier than you think. Get in touch and we’ll show you how.

Get in touch

The No-dumb-questions Network FAQ

You don’t need to be a die-hard Network nerd to realize all the value that business-grade Networks can deliver. In fact, a lot of this stuff is more straightforward than you might think. Take a look:

What is a network?

A network combines your devices together (e.g. computers, smartphones, printers, point-of-sale systems, security cameras), for the purposes of sharing information or communicating with each other, or other networks.

The foundational components of a network include: a switch, an access point, and a router.

The Meraki Go family includes a switch, access point, and security gateway (router and firewall). It provides all the essential ingredients you need to deploy a simple, secure, and smart cloud-based network, with full network visibility and management from the Meraki Go mobile app.

What is an Access Point?

An access point is a networking device that creates wireless connectivity (Wi-Fi) through a wireless local area network (WLAN).

The Meraki Go access point is a do-it-yourself cloud-based WiFi device that replaces a traditional router. It enables you to increase productivity and enhance customer experiences through reliable online connectivity, business-grade cybersecurity, and actionable insights about devices in your network.

For larger spaces, or locations with indoor and outdoor spaces, it’s also easy to add multiple indoor and/or outdoor access points that mesh together to provide extensive WiFi coverage.

What is a Switch?

A switch is commonly the foundation of a business network. It connects all WiFi-enabled wireless devices with wired devices in a network through its physical ports.

The Meraki Go network switch seamlessly unites and secures business devices, such as desktop computers, laptops, mobile devices, printers, VoIP phones, and IoT devices. It allows greater productivity through information sharing between devices, as well as cost savings from remote cloud-based management and automated updates.

If you have a printer, VoIP phone, and security camera that all require Ethernet cables to be connected to your network, you can simply plug them into an 8-port, 24-port, or 48-port network switch to connect them.

What is a Security Gateway?

A security gateway protects your business from online cyber threats by filtering out malicious internet traffic.

The Meraki Go security gateway is a combined cloud-managed router and firewall. A firewall acts as a barrier, protecting your internal network against external cybersecurity risks. A router allows your devices to connect to the internet.

For increased security, the optional Meraki Go Security Subscription can be added to your security gateway. Powered by Cisco Umbrella, the leader in online threat protection, it uses additional security measures to block certain types of traffic from your network, such as malware and phishing attacks.

Do I still need my Internet Service Provider subscription?

Yes, you’ll need to have an existing internet connection provided by your ISP in order for Meraki Go devices to work.

Do I still need to use the modem provided by my Internet Service Provider (ISP)?

Yes, you’ll need to have both an Internet Service Provider (ISP) and a modem to connect to the internet and enable Meraki Go devices to work.

Can I create a Meraki Go network with my existing router?

Yes, you can add any of our Meraki Go devices, including the security gateway and/or switches, to create a complete network with your existing router.

For the best results, we recommend deploying the full suite of Meraki Go hardware to replace your existing router. This lets you create a simpler, more secure, and scalable network with remote visibility and time savings from cloud management.

The optimal order for installing hardware is:
1. Connect the Meraki Go GX security gateway to the internet modem and power it on.
2. Connect any Meraki Go GS switches to the GX and power them on.
3. Connect any Meraki Go GR access points to the GS (or directly to the Meraki Go security gateway if no switch is present).

What if I change the location of my business?

You can quickly and easily setup Meraki Go at a new location in the same way you installed Meraki Go devices at your current location.

Simply unplug all your Meraki Go devices, re-install them at your new location, and connect them to the internet at your new site when prompted. Any of your existing network configurations will remain the same. If you’ve changed your time zone, just update it from your account settings in a few taps.

Follow the onboarding steps for more details.

How easy is it to grow my network?

You can easily add new Meraki Go devices to create a complete network or expand your network as your business grows and needs change.

Meraki Go access points feature wireless meshing, meaning you only need to connect one access point. Additional access points installed for extended WiFi coverage will mesh and communicate wirelessly and seamlessly by sharing the same internet connection.

You can also deploy an unlimited number of switches for each account as the number of wired devices in your network increases.

Does Meraki Go support having multiple account administrators?

Yes, you can have multiple admins manage a single network via the Meraki Go app, as well as easily switch accounts to manage multiple Meraki Go accounts.

How many Meraki Go devices should I use?

We recommend the following:

Access points
You can have up to 50 Meraki Go access points per account (any combination of indoor or outdoor access points). A single access point covers up to 500 sq feet and up to 50 clients.

Switches
You can have an unlimited number of Meraki Go switches per account. Choose between 8-port, 24-port, and 48-port switches based on the number of wired devices in your network.

Security gateway
Use one Meraki Go security gateway appliance per account and location.

Will Meraki Go integrate with Meraki Enterprise products?

No, existing Cisco Meraki product lines will not interoperate with Meraki Go, and you will not be able to manage them through the same console.