Upgrading Your Digital Signage Network: Invest in the Right Partner
A digital signage network isn’t some kind of set-it-and-forget-it technology. At some point your current network won’t be able to provide the experience you need, and it will require some level of upgrade.
Depending on your current digital signage network—and your future plans—there are some places where you can economize and other places you shouldn’t.
Taking Inventory of Your Network
The first investment you need to make isn’t monetary. It’s an investment of time. Before you can know where to spend your money, you need to know what’s already on your network, so before an upgrade becomes necessary spend some time figuring out what you already have. How old is it? Do you have newer components that don’t need replacing? Is your equipment still supported by your provider, but you need to upgrade your content management software? Is everything dated, not allowing you to add the features you need today?
Knowing your current network situation is vital to planning where you should invest. It will help prevent spending more money than you need to replace components that still have a useful life remaining. It’ll also help you determine what components you need to perform the functions you want on your network.
Finding a Partner
Once you know what’s on your network, it’s going to be most beneficial to find a partner that can help you make sense of what needs to be upgraded. Digital signage networks are complex. Trying to upgrade your network on your own so you can take advantage of newer and better technology and capabilities can be overwhelming. That said, upgrading your network doesn’t have to be hard. And it’s not if you have a partner with the expertise to know what you should keep and change out, and the willingness to prioritize your needs above their sales.
The right partner will help you develop a phased approach to upgrades that will help you manage your expenses and still, ultimately, get the improved performance you’re wanting.
Opportunities to Save
Hardware: Hardware is major expense in your network, so it’s tempting to try to save money by buying cheaper equipment designed for home use.
Commercial-grade digital signage network equipment is designed for heavy use. It lasts longer and doesn’t need replacing as often as lower-grade units, saving you in replacement costs and labor. However, this level of equipment isn’t necessary in every instance. There may be places on your network where consumer-grade equipment will do the job you need it to do. A partner with experience is able to look at your network and help you decide where an upgrade might be necessary and where it’s not required.
Legacy support costs. Replacing failing equipment, installing software patches, and maintaining third-party apps are all major expenses that also eat up a lot of time and money. Replacing your network with up-to-date components will save time and and give you more functionality. It will also save money in maintenance and support.
Installation costs. The right partner is going to be able to figure out the puzzle that is creating a digital signage network. Piecing together a network of compatible components and configuring them to achieve your objectives takes a lot of time and technical skill. But getting it right at the outset means it will be easier to scale up in the future, saving you from unnecessarily costly upgrades in a year or two.
Your upgraded digital signage network with the latest CMS will save you time and labor costs and give you more control over your content. With fewer component failures and fewer outages and interruptions in your system, your screens will be offering content to your customers that can improve the customer experience and increase store revenue.