Why would a small retailer be interested in a kiosk?
Retail kiosks can be used for many universal purposes. Check-in, registrations, wayfinding, information, POS (point-of-sale), etc. In retail, you may have noticed kiosks in major retail stores that do price checks, call for assistance, and serve as a self-service register for customers. They can access the retailer’s website to make online purchases, apply for credit cards, and rewards. Retail kiosks also assist in wayfinding so the customer can easily find the exact location of the item they are looking for, as well as providing opportunities to advertise coupons and sales.
The possibilities are endless when it comes to kiosks in retail. Installing kiosks are an easy choice to make for massive billion dollar businesses that have obscene budgets. What about the little guy? Small retailers all over the country could benefit equally from this technology, and cut down costs while they’re at it. If we’re being honest, just because there are great benefits, doesn’t mean the initial cost doesn’t exist.
So, naturally, you’re here because you want to know, “why would a small retailer be interested in a retail kiosk?” because you or someone you know is a small retailer who is thinking about getting a kiosk. Or maybe you just like to stay updated on this extraordinarily specific topic (that’s fine too). This is a pretty reasonable question, considering that purchases you make at this scale would affect a small retailer more than it would a massive chain retailer. So here’s the basics.
Why should a small retailer spend a bunch of their budget on a kiosk?
- Improved customer service
- Cut back on costs in payroll and paper resources
- Brand image
- Time efficiency
All of these things are a wonderful formula if what you intend to do is increase your profit. Return on investment is great for kiosks in business, which is we consider them to be a low-risk purchase. What you lose from initial purchase, you gain in money saved from paper products and payroll.
Misconception: Retail Kiosks Create Poor Company Image
What do you mean “cut back payroll?” You expect me to exchange people for computers? How will this make my business look?!
Let’s address that thought.
When I say, “cut back payroll” I don’t mean layoffs. What I mean is that you can run your business, pay your employees a livable wage, and still reduce payroll expenses. Rather than lose employees, they can better utilize their time to focus on customer service. A trait that can really help your business stand out.
Business getting busy? Rather than hire seasonal employees, have retail kiosks for when it gets busy as an additional resource to your customers and employees. This situation saves money and reduces stress caused by seasonal hiring and eventual layoffs. So I guess you could say, on the contrary, kiosks help business owners avoid layoffs.
The Store Set-Up
Normally, this is how a small clothing store would implement the kiosk. Place by the entrance, but in view of the register. There are three employees in this situation. One greets and assists with the kiosk, one runs all counter POS functions, and one is responsible for the cleanliness and organization of the clothing racks and general store maintenance. This is just one of many ways that a kiosk can fit into a store. If the store only requires two employees, a countertop kiosk could be placed on the same counter as the person working POS. The other employee would be responsible for both greeting and organizing the store.
The two biggest reasons that customers react negatively to a self-service kiosk is when you force them to use it, and when you make it inconvenient to use. For example, you should make sure the kiosk is easy to navigate, and that an employee is always close by in case the customer requires help using the kiosk. Place the kiosk nearby the purchasing counter so they are aware they still have options, and they are not necessarily forced to use the kiosk. Do these things, and you’ll be improving customer satisfaction and efficiency in no time.
To learn more about how kiosks can improve your small business, and to receive a project quote, call us at 603-865-1000