If there’s one thing that all point of sale (POS) solutions providers can agree on, it’s that to be successful, you have to keep up with industry demands. One of the latest trends that have made it necessary for solutions providers businesses to adapt is the booming unattended POS trend. The global interactive kiosk market saw record growth in 2018, reaching $9.22 billion and a 17.6 percent growth rate — which exceeded the growth rate in 2017.
Who’s Using Unattended POS Solutions?
Unattended POS has swept the quick service restaurant (QSR) sector. Last year, McDonald’s announced a plan to install self-service kiosks in 1,000 of its stores per quarter. Taco Bell planned kiosk installations in more than 6,000 locations, and Subway included self-service kiosks in its “Fresh Forward” initiative to transform customer experiences. And QSR customers are embracing the technology. Research for Tillster’s Self-Service Kiosk Index found that 31 percent of QSR customers used self-service kiosks last year and 54 percent planned to use them this year. Furthermore, 60 percent say they’d visit restaurants more often if they had self-service kiosks.
QSR isn’t the only market for unattended POS, however. Retailers are also finding ways to use the technology to their advantage. Erba Collective, a Los Angeles cannabis dispensary, installed self-service kiosks that accepted cashless payments to reduce wait times and increase customer turnover. Erba Collective also found it improves experiences for customers who can stop in, select their products, and pay within just a few minutes.
What’s Driving Unattended POS Growth?
Merchants of all types are looking at self-service kiosks for two major reasons:
It’s the right solution for today’s consumers: Consumers value their time, and waiting in line can destroy an otherwise great customer experience. Kiosks keep lines moving or eliminate them completely. Additionally, touchscreens and simple interfaces make unattended POS appealing and easy to use for consumers of all ages — from Gen Z to baby boomers.
It’s the right solution for today’s businesses: Merchants are facing mounting challenges ranging from rising labor costs to new competition. Self-service kiosks can help businesses do more with the same staff, minimizing the labor required for order taking or checkout. Ordering kiosks can reduce shrinkage — since the customer is placing the order, there are fewer order errors and waste. Kiosks can automatically upsell, unlike human employees who can forget or make offers inconsistently. Kiosks are also excellent solutions for serving customers efficiently during peak times.
Steps to Take to Add Unattended POS to Your Line Card
To provide unattended POS solutions, you will need to speak with your vendors or find new partners that offer the types of hardware you need. It’s also vital that you work with a payments partner with expertise in managing unattended POS transactions. Payment security and compliance are of primary importance, so consider semi-integrated solutions that allow cardholder data to bypass the kiosk application, and EMV chip technology will help prevent card fraud.
Many merchants are deploying self-service kiosks as a part of their omnichannel strategies, so ensure the payments solution you select integrates kiosk payments with existing POS and e-commerce accounts. Omnichannel payment solutions enable merchants to recognize customers using kiosks, award loyalty points, and collect data from unattended POS transactions to build a total view of their customers.
The Evolving, One-Stop Shop
If your goal is to be a total solutions provider and meet all of your customers’ needs — and reduce the risk of being unseated by another solutions provider with a broader range of offerings -- you need to offer unattended POS. Your clients in the restaurant and retail verticals are looking for the efficiency and enhanced CX that kiosks can provide, you need to offer unattended payment solutions to truly earn the title of a “one-stop shop.” Expanding your line card to offer these in-demand solutions will help you find new revenue opportunities with your existing customer base and with prospects.
Work with a payments partner that enables you to offer a range of unattended POS options to meet all of your clients’ needs — as well as keep your business relevant and competitive.