Kiosks 101: Using Self-Service Technology in Self-Storage

Via insideselfstorage.com

Kiosks are a self-service technology. What does that mean, and how can it improve a self-storage business?

Kiosks are now being used for a variety of tasks in many industries including healthcare, churches, human resources and, of course, self-storage. They can serve as a map, point-of-sale device, registrar, donation center and billpay station. Self-service technology makes a business accessible, allowing the customer to serve himself on his own schedule. It improves customer satisfaction by decreasing wait times, costs and resources.

A great example of a self-service kiosk is the banking automatic teller machine, or ATM. At first, bankers were hesitant to install this new technology. Now there are about 3 million ATMs worldwide. Other examples include vending machines and self-checkout registers in supermarkets and other retail stores.

Kiosks come in different models suited for different applications. The two most common models are freestanding and wall-mounted. There are also document kiosks and countertop models. Within these categories, there are various sizes and capabilities.

Freestanding kiosks don’t need to be attached to a wall, which makes them good for businesses that require versatility and mobility. They’re also good for situations requiring add-ons such as a keyboard, phone, side table, logo display, etc. For advertising purposes, a double-sided kiosk with a large, interactive display is a good choice. This works well in high-density areas, particularly for wayfinding or informing many people simultaneously.

Wall-mounted kiosks are attached to a wall. They come in all sizes and save floor space. Like freestanding models, they’re good ways to advertise and can include add-ons.

A document kiosk is like a freestanding model but includes a scanner and printer, which makes it bulkier and less mobile. This type of machine is popular for offices, human resources and school-printing clusters.

A countertop kiosk is the smallest of the options and used on a counter, table or desk. It takes up the least space and is meant for conditions that require few, if any, add-ons.

Solutions for Self-Storage

Now that you have a better understanding of self-service technology, let’s get to the pressing matter. What problems in self-storage do kiosks solve?

There’s a lot of competition out there. That’s why it’s important to make your business stand out. A kiosk can differentiate and improve your property in several ways. By automating simple processes such as renting units and making payments, a kiosk provides:

There’s a lot of competition out there. That’s why it’s important to make your business stand out. A kiosk can differentiate and improve your property in several ways. By automating simple processes such as renting units and making payments, a kiosk provides:

If you want to improve your facility with self-service technology, there are questions you should ask. It all boils down to how you want your company to be perceived. Each kiosk presents a different image and experience. It’s important to find the product and manufacturer that best align with your business goals. Design, quality, software capability and price are all things to consider.

Kiosks are increasingly becoming a great way to improve your self-storage operation while getting ahead of the competition. They enhance customer service, decrease costs and increase differentiation.

While the return on investment for a kiosk can be high, some operators might still find it difficult to make the initial investment. Kiosks vary in model and price. Look for one that solves your problems but doesn’t break the bank.

Kelsie Collins is the marketing content writer and editor for Advanced Kiosks, a self-service kiosk company in Franklin, N.H., that offers several models. For more information, call 603.865.1000, ext. 103; e-mail kelsie@advancedkiosks.com; visit http://advancedkiosks.com. You can also subscribe to her blog at http://advancedkiosks.com/self-service-blog.

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