6 Ways Self-Service Kiosks Benefit Your Business

Two women using kiosk

By Stephanie Van Ness


Interactive, touch screen kiosks are indispensable for today’s businesses, from quick-service restaurants to retail showrooms to urgent care waiting rooms. Built around both hardware and software components, digital kiosks create an interactive solution intended to provide a compelling customer experience.

Touch screen kiosks are used to display information, dispense tickets, accept cash and electronic payments, and communicate critical messages. Essentially, self-service kiosks empower users to conveniently complete tasks on their own schedule and perform essential activities, from purchasing goods to checking into their hotel, without need for employee assistance. 

Whether for healthcare, government, retail, restaurant, hospitality or any other market, a digital kiosk typically incorporates a touch screen computer housed on an attractive stand that can be placed on the ground or on an elevated countertop. Or it can be an Android or iPad-like tablet that can be used untethered – for instance brought to diners table-side – or attached to a sturdy stand designed to prevent damage or theft. Kiosks can also encompass other hardware – peripherals, like printers and card readers. Kiosk software can support multiple integrations, and provide eye-catching visuals designed to engage users.

Self-Service Kiosks are Good for Business

Digital kiosks are appropriate for nearly all businesses, nonprofits and government agencies of any size because they allow organizations to deliver great customer service with limited staff, and quickly scale operations while reducing costs. Here are five key benefits digital kiosks offer business owners.

1. Shorter Wait Times

Self-service kiosks provide faster, more convenient and more personalized experiences, whether that involves ordering dinner or check-in in for auto repair services. That’s good news since customers, from retail to restaurants, hate to wait. According to a recent study on checkout lines, 69% of customers said long lines were the most irritating part of shopping (Mad Mobile). Self-service kiosks significantly decrease wait times by accelerating the ordering process. That means that self-service kiosks please customers by getting them on their way more quickly (and happy customers are returning customers!) and benefit the business owner by enabling the businesses to serve more customers.

2. Increased Customer Spending 

Many customers are more comfortable purchasing goods or ordering food on their own. By enabling customers to complete tasks without being bothered by a sales associate, you can deliver a desirable customer experience likely to lead to increased sales. For instance, research on dining establishments shows that customers tend to spend more money when ordering via a self-service kiosk or table-based tablet system than when ordering from wait staff. Restaurant chain Chili's is but one real-world example – the chain reported that their patrons spent as much as 20% more per order after Chili’s installed self-service tablets.

3. Decreased Operating Costs

Self-service kiosks and digital displays hold down labor costs by automating common or repetitive tasks, allowing your staff to focus on more time-consuming tasks or tasks that truly require human interaction. For instance, your digital retail kiosk can help shoppers locate a desired item or provide detailed product information to help them make purchasing decisions. By relying on your digital kiosk to assist shoppers with routine queries, you’ll be able to reduce operating costs by scheduling fewer shifts – even trimming headcount – without diminishing customer care.

4. Greater Transaction Efficiency

With a payment kiosk (a self-service kiosk equipped with NFC or other payment integrations), you’ll increase efficiency of customer tasks like paying bills or ordering tickets. These types of kiosks are well-suited to places like train stations, airports, movie theaters, even amusement parks – not to mention quick-service restaurants. By replacing cashiers with an automated kiosk system, you can free human resources – your staff – to help visitors with more complex needs. 

5. Increased Order Accuracy

When employees, such as cashiers and wait staff, input customer orders there’s always the chance for human error which can be costly for a business both in terms of wasted resources (an incorrect food order that gets sent back to the kitchen) and time (the business takes a few extra minutes to correct an order it had already fulfilled). Self-service kiosks ensure order accuracy by enabling customers to input orders themselves. This is especially helpful for orders that are complicated or highly personalized like my usual gluten-free-no-almonds-no-spinach-dressing-on-the-side salad order. 

6. More-Effective Brand Promotion

For business owners, the main purpose of providing digital kiosks are branding and self-promotion. Whether outfitted for order processing or simply wayfinding, touch screen kiosks encourage more people to actively engage with your business. By customizing your digital kiosk to deliver a delightful user experience, you’ll showcase your business, bolster brand recognition 

Interested in a Kiosk for Your Business?

Viewpoint excels at designing compelling self-service kiosk solutions. We handle every aspect of interface design and software development, and partner with top hardware manufacturers like Samsung to provide a complete kiosk solution. If you’re ready to create customer experiences that are distinctive, appealing and convenient, get in touch

Stephanie Van Ness

Assoc. Director of Marketing and Chief Storyteller at ICS, Boston UX and ViewPoint Interactive Solutions

An experienced copywriter with a Boston University J-school degree, Stephanie Van Ness writes about user experience (UX) design and innovations in technology, from self-driving vehicles to gesture-controlled medical devices. Her work has appeared in a number of industry publications, including Medical Design & Outsourcing, Mass Device, Connected World,Medical Device + Diagnostics, UX Collective and Prototypr.