Market Research Engine reports the interactive kiosk market is expected to grow to $30 billion by 2022, a CAGR of 5 percent. Kiosk Marketplace reports on greater demand for self-service technology in a range of vertical markets.
Retailers, for example, are leveraging kiosks to alleviate some of the workload from sales associates, especially related to buy online, pickup in store orders. Zebra Technologies’ 11th annual Global Shopper Survey found that 52 percent of retailers are converting some traditional checkout counters to self-checkout areas, and 62 percent are repurposing counter space for online order pickup. The Kiosk Marketplace article also points out that retailers are finding ways to use kiosks to bridge the gap between digital and physical shopping experiences, better engaging shopper in-store.
Kiosk market growth is also driven by other use cases such as:
- Airline travel, where industry analysts expect the demand for biometric kiosks and electronic gates to triple by 2022.
- Healthcare, which leverages kiosks for efficient and secure patient check-in.
- Restaurants, which enable customers to place their own orders, quickly pick up orders, and access nutrition or loyalty program information.
- Casinos are adding functionality to machines that enhance guest experiences and drive revenue.
- Reception kiosks, which eliminate the need for an employee to always be at the front desk.
- Ticketing kiosks allow customers to purchase and print tickets without assistance.
UX is the Key to Software Applications for the Kiosk Market
When you design an application for this growing market, probably the most important thing to remember is who the users are. You aren’t designing applications for the business or the retailer or the medical office. You’re designing kiosk applications to be used by everyday people who have no training ahead of time to use the software. Kiosk applications need to be extremely easy to understand and to use.
First and foremost, they should efficiently help the user complete the task they’re using the kiosk for, whether that’s ordering a meal, checking in for an appointment, or printing a ticket. Make sure the user can follow clear instructions to get the job done. Many self-service kiosks have touchscreens, which can be easier for users in many cases. But if the user needs to type information, for example when checking in for a doctor’s appointment, make sure the process is as user-friendly as possible.
You also need to consider the environment and the circumstances under which the kiosk will be used. Will it be deployed in a busy and noisy commercial area where sound cues wouldn’t be helpful? Is it necessary to keep any of the information the user shares, for example, date of birth, confidential — and could other people in line be looking at the screen?
Self-service, interactive kiosks also need to be fast. Customers arriving at an airport, placing a lunch order, or checking out of a hotel in time to meet a cab won’t have patience while graphics load or the system generates confirmation.
Software Also Has to Meet the Business’ Objectives
As important as the UX, it’s also important to develop software that meets your customer’s objectives. Does kiosk software need to integrate with an ERP system or inventory management, or other business system? Does your customer want the kiosk to accept payments? Does your customer want to leverage the kiosk for other functions beyond its primary purpose, such as advertising, engaging users during a wait, collecting data or verifying a user’s identity? You also need to make sure the kiosk is just as easy to manage and maintain as it is for the user to use.
The growth of the kiosk market is something that could have a significant impact on your business. Functions your client’s employees used to perform may be transitioning to a self-service task — and business that you don’t want to lose to a competitor. Design kiosk applications that will help your clients — and their customers — easily get those tasks done.