Top Self-Service Technologies

What is Self-Service Technology?

Self-service technologies (SST) are exactly what they sound like: Technologies that empower customers to complete or manage a transaction or gather information without the assistance of an employee. Self-service technologies offer customers the ability to interact and transact with a business via an interface, independent of direct communication with another person, which ups the convenience of the interaction and gives the customer a greater sense of control over their experience.

Top Self Service Technologies in Retail and Hospitality

Today, the most common kind of self-service tools are in the form of self-service kiosks, which are interactive computer terminals. Typically, they are large free-standing structures that permit customers to conduct services. However, they can also include smaller technologies, such as handheld or table-side screens. Below are some of the most successful types of self-service technologies in retail and hospitality and a rundown on how they impact customers and businesses:

Appointment Booking

Not all self-service technologies are immediately available at the physical location of the business. Instead, some are offered directly online via a businesses’ website or app. Appointment booking software, such as Ombori Grid’s Appointment Booking, offer customers the ability to book, manage, and pay for reservations online. These online tools help businesses manage crowds and remind customers of appointments all while reducing staffing, and they remove one more barrier for the busy customer looking to schedule or manage an appointment.

What Makes a Good Self-Service Tool?

There is no one definition of “good” technology, but businesses that want to optimize success via self-service technologies should consider the following features in the technology they select.

Ensure Software is Multilingual

Visitors, especially those participating in the retail and hospitality industries, come from all over the world. As a result, many cultures must be considered when developing self-service technologies — this includes incorporating multi-lingual capabilities. Especially in urban areas with diverse populations, good self-service technology will help businesses reach new customer bases by offering services in a variety of languages.

The Self-Service Technology Should Improve the Customer Experience

The focus should always be on improving the customer experience, whether it be utilizing the technology to expedite services, offer easy access to information, or allow service after closing hours. By focusing on the customer experience, businesses will be able to inadvertently grow their bottom line and reduce lost business for the right reasons.

Benefits of Self-Service Technologies for Businesses

The implementation of self-service technologies should be mutually beneficial. It offers improved experiences to both consumers and businesses, and as they become more common, they will be critical for the ongoing success of companies worldwide. At a glance, here are the benefits these SSTs offer retailers and hospitality professionals.

For the Business

Streamlining operations is a major benefit of self-service technology. Any tool like a ticketing kiosk or ordering station helps reduce staffing needs for the business, saving them money. The employees who might have struggled to manage crowds or correct human errors will be more productive and less stressed with the assistance of self-service technology.

Looking Ahead

Self-service technology, to put it succinctly, is the future of doing business in any customer-facing industry. Companies that embrace an omnichannel approach and honor the needs of their busy customers will be rewarded with loyalty, improved revenue, and happier employees.

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