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Why Merchants Wish They Had Unattended Payment Solutions This Holiday Season

holiday kioskKids (and some grownups) make wish lists of the things they’re hoping to receive for the holidays. If you’re a point of sale (POS) ISV or VAR, it’s important for you to recognize that another activity occurs during the holiday shopping season: Merchants make wish lists, too. Retailers and restaurant managers want things that allow them to make the most of opportunities to increase revenues and build customer relationships from November to January. In the thick of things when customers are clamoring for deals and service, however, they may realize they need to expand their wish lists with tools they need to accomplish those goals.


Unattended payments is one solution that can check off at least five of the things merchants are wishing for this holiday season:

  1. Shorter lines

Long lines aren’t just an annoyance that blocks traffic flow and stresses out sales associates and cashiers. They lead to lost sales. A TimeTrade survey of retail executives found that 75 percent of businesses have lost customers due to line and shoppers’ perception of how long they’d have to wait. The tipping point seems to be about 5 minutes — if consumers think they have to wait longer, they may abandon their purchases.

Self-service ordering and unattended payment in restaurants and retail locations can help busy holiday shoppers get to everything on their lists without delays caused by waiting in line.

  1. Broader engagement

Merchants may be frustrated to lose holiday shoppers browsing in a particular department — perhaps seasonal merchandise or popular gift items — due to lack of engagement. Kiosks that provide product or pricing information and unattended payment capabilities can help your customers capitalize on some of that untapped business.

Moreover, some shoppers prefer using kiosks to tracking down and interacting with a sales associate. SOTI’s 2019 Annual Connected Retailer Survey found 73 percent of shoppers favor self-service options to improve shopping experiences and minimize interaction with staff, and that statistic is 10.6 percent higher than findings of the 2018 survey.

  1. Better labor allocation

Stores and restaurants have more moving parts during the holiday shopping season than at other times of the year. Promotions create traffic that has inventory flying off shelves, retailers may offer additional services such as gift wrapping or shopping assistance during events such as “Men’s Night Out,” and the returns counter gets busier. Restaurants see an uptick in catering and reservations for parties. With all of this activity, the best use of employees may not be standing behind a payment terminal and ringing up sales.

Unattended payments automate checkout and allow merchants to assign employees where they can make the biggest impact on customer service and revenues. This technology can also decrease some of the stress that employees feel during the busy season, helping to increase job satisfaction and encourage seasonal workers to return next year. 

  1. Consistent upselling opportunities

Human cashiers can get distracted from upselling when store volume is high, and the pressure is on to move people through lines. Software in a self-service kiosk, however, can be programmed to — possibly even making offers that are complementary to what the customer is purchasing. Every customer will see or hear an offer to add to their orders before they tap “pay now.”

  1. High efficiency during an ultra-high traffic time

Last, but not least, unattended payments provide merchants with a solution that allows them to operate efficiently when normal processes and schedules may need to be suspended to keep up with holiday demand.

The Gift That Keeps on Giving

When you connect with your clients in January and ask for their impressions of the 2019 holiday shopping season, be ready to help them plan to make 2020 more successful by offering unattended payments. The solutions you provide will not only help them operate more efficiently when consumers track down those wish list items next year, but they will also enable merchants to provide fast, convenient customer service all year long.

Add Unattended Payments to your Solutions!