The days of a totally digital-free retail experience are quickly vanishing in the rearview. Your in-store customers are fully accustomed to the ease and immediacy of e-commerce. If you want continued success in the brick and mortar game, you’ll need to bring a touch of the digital experience to your store, and interactive kiosks are a great way to get started with a phygital strategy. Let’s explore some of the best strategies for implementing and leveraging kiosks for better customer engagement.
What is an Interactive Kiosk?
Interactive kiosks are digital screens placed strategically throughout a store to pique customer interest and ease the purchase experience. The possible uses for kiosks like this are innumerable, but some common applications include:
- Locating a particular product within the store
- Ordering an item that’s out of stock
- Accessing videos of product use cases
- Streamlining restaurant ordering experiences
- Getting store information
- Booking consultations and appointments
- Making purchases
- Standing in for typical employee interactions
- Creating a great in-store experience
How to Use Digital Kiosks in Retail
Interactive kiosks are most successful when implemented with a carefully considered strategy. Get started with these tips to use kiosks effectively
Allow Customers to Self-Service Purchases
Ease and independence are two of the major reasons consumers are embracing digital kiosks. Modern consumers often prefer a self-service experience over working with store associates, and using a digital interface is now second nature, familiar, and enjoyable to the majority of shoppers. Give customers space to navigate your store independently. This will give them ample time to browse your full assortment, investigate options, and streamline their purchase process.
Give Customers Access to Endless Aisle
A great use of digital kiosks is to tap into the benefits of an endless aisle. This allows customers to see your full inventory of products and services, even ones that you don’t have in-store that day. Customers can quickly scroll through products, determine what they need, and then buy it right there on screen to be delivered or picked up at a later date.
Make the Experience Count
Digital kiosks can introduce fun, memorable experiences with augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), social media, and more. Allowing customers to engage with your products like this can foster a lasting relationship that builds brand loyalty and encourages repeat visits. Customers can not only see themselves using your products, they see themselves doing so in a totally new way they won’t soon forget. If you add social media to your digital kiosks (allowing guests to take pictures with branded props or filters, for example), you’ll enable a fun experience for in-store guests and spread the word about your business online. Plus, leaning into this digital, gamified approach can be a great way to target younger audiences.
Place Kiosks Strategically
Position digital kiosks around the products or services that you want to draw attention to—customer favorites or products that are overstocked or offer the highest profit margin. Consumers will naturally gravitate to interactive screens versus other product displays. Draw attention strategically, but always ensure you’re considering the customer experience as well as your business needs.
Benefits of Interactive Kiosks
We’ve talked a lot about the consumer benefits of interactive kiosks, from the familiarity factor of digital screens to the independent shopping experience and the added entertainment value of interactive experiences. But there are also a host of benefits to you as the retailer.
Reduce Employee Headcount
Struggling to fill positions or need to cut operations costs? Interactive kiosks can often take on tasks normally performed by employees, allowing you to succeed with a smaller team. Use technology to your advantage and assign your kiosks the rote tasks of helping customers find items, informing about loyalty programs and special deals, and completing purchases.
Support Your Existing Team
As customers lean on kiosks more for assistance, your remaining employees will be freed up to do other critical work. Additionally, kiosks can be a great centralized source of knowledge to use as a training tool. Trainees can use kiosks to easily earn your inventory and layout, while experienced staff can stay aware of new products and easily make updates to pricing, promotions, and store content.
Cut On-Hand Inventory
The endless aisle capabilities enabled by kiosks often mean you can accomplish more with less physical inventory in-store. This can help cut your overhead costs, reduce your store footprint, and allow you to focus more energy on store design and experience rather than inventory management.
Maximize Sales Opportunities
Kiosks are permanent salespeople in your store, always ready and on deck to give customers the info they need to make a purchase. Additionally, a successful interactive experience can delight customers and encourage them to recommend your store and return in the future.
Examples: Digital Kiosks from Our Portfolio
This design incorporates a central kiosk “hub” and four connected product displays, each with its own digital screen for a seamless phygital experience.
Endless aisle is a top application for digital kiosks. In our project for Toys R Us, we created a digital kiosk with a simple, kid-friendly design that customers can use to easily find the toys they want.
This Microsoft kiosk features enlarged versions of the brands devices, alongside actual-size products, to draw attention and encourage customers to interact with and experience products themselves.
Kiosks can also serve as an important part of a connected experience, whether that’s within a larger shopping center or even in a community space to present helpful information about the area, dining, and shopping and safety features.
These four different applications of interactive kiosks demonstrate the range of industries that benefit from experiential tech. Note the menu feature that allows customers to order and pay in one seamless step, as well as the airline kiosk, which adds convenience and fun to a typically difficult (and stressful) process.
Enhance Your Customer Experience with Interactive Opportunities
Interactive kiosks are a great entry point into the world of phygital and experiential retail, bringing the convenience of digital solutions to the immediacy and engagement of an in-store experience. You just need to have the right design and functionality to enhance your store’s unique brand—and that’s where MINT can help.
Whether you’re looking for a standalone kiosk project, a total revamp of your existing store, or a new store launch, our team of designers, installers, and strategists can help you create the perfect customer experience. Let’s talk about what we can create together—just book a meeting to get started.