Manage Customer Flow with Virtual Queues

Blog post author
Andreas Hassellöf
April 15, 2020

queue-management-image-1What Is A Virtual Queue?

Grocers, pharmacies, and all other stores around the world need to keep operating throughout the global pandemic. Reducing the risk of infection both in stores and in queues outside stores by using social distancing is a major priority. Virtual queues allow stores to control the number of people within the store and reduces the number of people waiting in line using a simple virtual queuing system. 

What are virtual queues, exactly? Loosely, a virtual queue can be defined as any digitally-based line system that employs similar "wait your turn" tactics typically adopted in a physical fashion. Instead, by blending technology with traditional queueing, virtual queues provide order within various organizations and industries, without the need for physical presence.

Top 3 Benefits of Employing Virtual Queues in Physical Spaces

As owners and operators within the retail, hospitality and healthcare industries continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, they understand the continued need for virtual options. By adopting virtual queues, owners and operators of physical storefronts can garner the following benefits:

1. Help Your Customers 

  • Avoid physical queues:There's no need to queue outside of the store. Virtual queueing allows customers to wait in the comfort of their car or other safe location. 

  • No waiting times:Book a time to shop in advance and arrive at a scheduled time to avoid waiting in line. 

  • No need to enter the store: Easily offer curbside pickup of orders and notify your employees when the customer has arrived for pickup 

2. Empower Your Team 

  • Manage customer flows: Limit the number of people in the store at any point in time. 
  • Avoid physical queues: Waiting in line can cause viral infections. Through responsive virtual queueing, use messaging and notifications to tell customers when it's their turn to approach the entrance. 
  • Protect: Use any personal device to manage the queue without any need to touch a shared device or customer tickets. 
  • Inform: Every team member in the store can see an overview of the current footfall. Virtual queuing solutions enable team members inside the store and outside to manage the queue in sync. 
  • Optimize: Set the capacity for a targeted store. Make announcements to customers waiting in the virtual queue and keep them informed and happy. Scale the system. 

3. Protect Your Business 

  • Analytics dashboard: Understand how the store is functioning and provide proof of compliance with social distancing measures or restrictions set by governments. 
  • Quick deployment: Cloud-based solution with no hardware requirement in the store allows you to be up and running quickly.
  • Future proof: Expandable once this crisis has passed, the virtual queuing system is Enterprise ready and build on MS Azure. It can integrate with digital signage, touchscreens, ticket printers, and even loyalty mobile applications. 

Virtual Queues Elevate Overall Customer Experiences

By streamlining the queueing process, while simultaneously encouraging physical distancing measures, customers benefit from an elevated experience. In turn, many customers feel that their time is valued by the company a company that proactively employs tactics to help them save time, navigate their shopping experience in a streamlined fashion, and sets expectations accurately.

In fact, according to Hospitality Tech, "the pandemic has made it even more important for consumers to spend as little time as possible in stores waiting to pick up orders." Thus, employing virtual queues, as well as BOPIS options and beyond, will help retailers to craft a coveted customer experience.

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