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5 Key Points For Partners In Cisco Meraki's New Small Biz Wi-Fi Solution

Cisco Meraki Go is aimed at customers with fewer than 50 employees, a segment the company hasn't targeted in the past, and one that offers solution providers an opportunity to break into new markets.

Cisco Meraki has launched a brand-new Wi-Fi solution built specifically for small businesses. Very small businesses.

The solution, Meraki Go, is aimed at customers with fewer than 50 employees. It's a segment of the market that Cisco Meraki hasn't targeted in the past, and Kevin Rezai, Meraki Go sales manager, said the company has essentially brought the full Meraki cloud-managed Wi-Fi experience to that market.

That new experience includes simplified cloud management that's handled from a mobile app, all the security capabilities customers expect from Cisco Meraki, as well as pricing small business owners can easily get comfortable with, Rezai said.

"We pioneered cloud management and simplicity," Rezai said. "We never forget that core value, which is to simplify powerful technology. We designed Meraki Go to be a do-it-yourself solution so any customer, no matter their technical acumen, will be able to download the app, set up their network in minutes and manage and optimize it over time using the guided app experience."

Here are 5 key points for partners to consider as Meraki Go hits the market.

Meraki Go Is Purpose-Built

"We didn't just take the enterprise product, strip out some features and cross off some zeros from the price tag," Rezai said. Meraki Go is designed specifically with small businesses in mind from a simple, mobile app-based management tool to ease of optimization and security patching. "We want it, the mobile app in particular, to be a new kind of experience that would really speak to a small business owner," Rezai said.

Feature Performance
Rather than strip features out of a Cisco Meraki enterprise product, Meraki has drilled down into the features it believes matter most to small businesses, including simple guest Wi-Fi, and the ability to toggle segmented guest Wi-Fi using the mobile the app. Businesses can also set usage limits, and block web sites, all from the app. "It's a lot of the same power and visibility that you get with the Meraki enterprise product, but in a way that will speak to this sort of customer," Rezai said.

Today's Wi-Fi Isn't Getting It Done For Small Business

Before launching Meraki Go, Cisco Meraki surveyed about 1,000 small businesses and found that nearly half use the same type of Wi-Fi devices that the owners use in the homes. More than 80 percent of small businesses have no dedicated IT person, relying instead on friends or tech-savvy employees. And 90 percent think they've never been the victim of a cyberattack when estimates indicate that about two-thirds of small businesses have been attacked.

New Channel Territory
Meraki Go offers solution providers an opportunity to target a new customer segment where Cisco and Meraki have traditionally not been a great fit, Rezai said. "Partners say they love Meraki, they love the dashboard, the power, the visibility, but they just can't justify the price point to a 10-person coffee shop, or a five-person legal office," he said. "We've never had a product that can deliver that visibility and power at an attractive price point. It's designed to be sold in a low-touch, simple way with a self-explanatory value proposition."

School Of Management
The solution is managed through Meraki's well-known web dashboard in the form of a mobile app. "We feel like this will really speak to this type of customer because it can give a much more guided experience than dumping you into a web page and having you poke around," Rezai said. The system, Rezai said, is designed to eliminate some of the IT headaches small business owners can face. "They're able to access support through the app and chat with a dedicated person," he said. "It saves the customer money and time. On the security front, Meraki Go makes an effort to familiarize customers with the variety of cyber threats they face, while giving them "the comfort and peace of mind of a brand like Cisco and Meraki standing behind them with all the security patches we can offer," Rezai said.

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