Palmer Retail Solutions Blog

Does Your Kiosk Pass the "Usability" Test?

Posted by Kathy Heil on Jun 5, 2014 10:19:01 AM

How to test the usability of your kiosk.

Like the Field of Dreams, if you build an interactive kiosk, people will come. Kiosks automatically attract attention, but how do you know if your kiosk will pass the "usability" test?. One way you will know is if people actually use it, and feel good about the experience. If interactive kiosks are not easy and intuitive to use, people will shy away from them. Worse, they’ll associate your brand with their frustration.

As excited as you may be to get your kiosk into position and operating, you should allot extra time before launch to be certain it will perform as intended– from your user’s standpoint.
Testing the usability of interactive kiosks before deploying them is essential. The point of installing a kiosk is to enhance your customer’s experience with your business. Therefore, the goal of usability testing isn’t to see if the kiosk functions properly from a mechanical or electronic standpoint, it’s to see how – and how well – your intended audience is able to interact with the equipment to accomplish their desired objectives.

 

That requires asking the right questions.

You can test usability by observing subjects using the kiosk in a controlled setting and by employing more sophisticated techniques such as tracking eye movement or heat mapping to understand and perfect the user experience. But testing is only worthwhile if the test itself is properly constructed. You have to ask the right questions to get helpful answers.

Where will your kiosk be used?

Different settings such as a lobby, retail store or waiting room will affect the design and placement of the kiosk. An information kiosk that looks like an out of place ATM might be ignored in a waiting room.

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Tags: kiosk design, palmer, retail advice, kiosk advice, kiosks, palmer retail solutions, mobile kiosk, interactive kiosks, kiosk, kiosk tips, choosing a kiosk, retail, kiosk test

Cost Saving Benefits of an Interactive Kiosk

Posted by Kathy Heil on Apr 3, 2014 8:17:05 AM

Reduce transaction costs with a kiosk.

Don’t let the name fool you. You can use an interactive kiosk to reduce transaction costs inside your store as well as outside. Every time you can assist a customer or close a sale faster, your transaction costs go down. A kiosk enables customers to complete transactions entirely on their own, significantly reducing your cost per sale.

A kiosk is “open” 24 hours a day, every day. You can do business with people even when your store is closed, or facilitate transactions for customers who are on the go and don’t have time to come in and browse.

You can post your kiosk right outside your door, or you can place it in another high-traffic section of your store. You can locate it in an unusual place where it may reach an altogether different shopping audience. Kiosks allow you to branch out at a tiny fraction of the cost normally associated with opening additional storefront locations.

As every business owner knows, one of the biggest expenses is employees. Because an interactive kiosk offers tremendous opportunities to interact with customers more efficiently, you can pare down the number of employees you need to keep things running smoothly, and let skilled sales and customer service people devote more time and attention to shoppers who have complex questions or simply prefer a more personal touch.

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Tags: building a kiosk, kiosk size, kiosks, palmer retail solutions, choosing a kiosk, interactive kiosk

An Interactive Kiosk Case Study: WestJet Christmas Surprise

Posted by aderby on Dec 20, 2013 8:27:00 AM

WestJet uses digital kiosk to grant Christmas wishes.

A viral video that gained millions of view in the span of a few days highlights the functionality of interactive kiosks. WestJet, a Canadian airline, pulled off what they are calling a "Christmas Miracle," which was made possible with the responsive abilities of digital kiosks.

As you can see in the video above, WestJet passengers would walk up to a large kiosk decorated to look like a giant Christmas present. Following the prompt on the large digital display, passengers would scan their boarding passes at a scanner located to the right of the screen. There were also WestJet personnel standing by to help passengers with the process.

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Tags: retail space, WestJet, WestJet airlines, digital kiosks, kiosks, palmer retail solutions, interactive kiosks, kiosk, kiosk display, viral video, kiosk tips, retail solutions, choosing a kiosk, interactive kiosk, Christmas Miracle, Retail Environment Industry

Common Kiosk Mistakes

Posted by aderby on Sep 12, 2013 6:48:48 AM

Have a successful kiosk by avoiding these project pitfalls.

A kiosk is a small business venture, and should be treated as such. Best business practices should carry over to the retail project. There are details specific to kiosks, such as location, foot-traffic, and usability that should be kept in mind. Basic business building blocks still require a kiosk entrepreneur to be marketing savvy with a clear understanding of financials. Have a successful kiosk by avoiding some common business mistakes.

Retail Kiosk Business Mistakes

  • Poor execution. Execution is key. Technical errors keep kiosks from making money. Customers will stop coming to the kiosk if it is unreliable. Maybe it requires you to spend more money on upkeep, but profit in the long-run will be greater.
  • Refusing to innovate. Don't succumb to the vision of what you think the kiosk should be like. Put reality into play when planning. Change strategies when they fall flat. Listen to customer feedback. Don't underestimate the competition. Realign advertising tactics.
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Tags: building a kiosk, retail business, successful kiosk, business advice, retail kiosks, kiosk advice, kiosks, palmer retail solutions, building a retail kiosk, kiosk, kiosk display, kiosk mistakes, kiosk tips, retail solutions, choosing a kiosk, choosing a kiosk design, Retail Environment Industry

Kiosk Aesthetics

Posted by aderby on Sep 11, 2013 11:08:20 AM

Create a desirable first impression with a stylish kiosk design.

Employees wear uniforms, so why shouldn't your kiosk be dressed to impress as well? Function and fashion can go hand-in-hand. When designing your dream kiosk, think beyond utility. A kiosk should be styled to align with the brand, visually appeal to customers, and enhance the retail experience.

Simple kiosk customizations such as exterior cladding panels, colored frame coating, custom truss and lighting designs, parapets, stone finishes, spandrel and tinted glass treatments are available to make your kiosk a marketing tool in itself. Utilize the chance to further integrate the company into consumer's minds to enhance top-of-mind awareness.

Visuals should go even beyond self-promotion to enhance the viewer's experience. Colors and aesthetics can be used to aid engagement and exploration. The kiosk's initial challenge is to persuade the audience to interact with it. Using inviting aesthetics conquers this initial hurdle.

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Tags: building a kiosk, kiosk design, kiosk aesthetics, kiosk appearance, selecting a kiosk, kiosks, palmer retail solutions, kiosk, kiosk display, kiosk tips, retail solutions, choosing a kiosk, designing a kiosk, choosing a kiosk design

Selecting Kiosk Styles

Posted by adminx on Feb 25, 2013 12:03:55 PM

Choosing between an walkthrough or island style kiosk.

Whether you’ve been shopping for a kiosk, or just walking through the mall, you’ve probably noticed that there are two primary styles of kiosk-- island and walkthrough. When deciding on a kiosk for your own business, these two unique designs each have distinctive benefits.

Benefits of a Walkthrough Kiosk

Bigger: The design dictates that customers be able to literally walk through the kiosk. This can sometimes mean that your “kiosk” will have a greater
number of shelves strategically placed for displaying of your product.

Dual-Sided Display: This is a big plus for many mobile retailers, primarily those with less-expensive products. You may recall the seasonal calendar stands which sit in the center of many malls with their easily browsed “bookshelf” type feel.

Better flow across displays: Having your customers physically move through your merchandise is a good thing in retail. The closer they get to the product and the more they can see, the more likely they are to buy.

Interactive Retail Space: An employee working a walkthrough kiosk cannot sit idly by while customers simply admire the merchandise. Instead, a walkthrough design encourages the salesperson to actively engage customers as they walk around and through the retail selling space.

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Tags: building a kiosk, island kiosk, kiosk design, palmer, walkthrough kiosk, mall kiosks, selecting a kiosk, kiosks, palmer retail solutions, kiosk tips, retail solutions, choosing a kiosk, walkthrough, choosing a kiosk design

Is a Kiosk Right for Me?

Posted by adminx on Feb 5, 2013 6:58:44 AM

Kiosks as a business model.

Here at Palmer Retail Solutions, we make a lot of kiosks. For more than 20 years, we’ve designed them, built them, partnered with our clients to meet all their space and leasing requirements, and helped launch lots of successful small businesses.

We hear from a lot of clients early in their research process, wondering “is a kiosk the right business model for my retail idea?” Often, the answer is yes! After all, kiosks are a flexible, customizable, relatively low-cost way to launch and run a great business.

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Tags: building a kiosk, selecting a kiosk, kiosks, palmer retail solutions, risks of kiosks, retail solutions, choosing a kiosk

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