6 weeks until Christmas! How to improve Christmas retail queuing experience

improve christmas retail queuing experience

It’s that time of year once again! Christmas is slowly but surely encroaching on our lives – from starting to think about gifts we need to buy to hearing that first Christmas song of the season on the radio. The festive season is a joyous time of year, but for retailers and shoppers alike, it can cause unwanted stress. For retailers, now is the time to put those last minute checks in to ensure that their Christmas retail queuing experience is managed efficiently for their customers.

Here are Tensator’s top 4 tips as to how to improve Christmas retail queuing experience:


1). Make sure that you have enough staff to cope with the increase in shoppers

The influx of Christmas shoppers to a store should also see a greater amount of staff available on a shop floor. It may seem basic, but it’s crucial in order to manage the long queues at peak Christmas shopping times. To improve Christmas retail queuing experience, an easy starting point is to reduce the amount of time spent in a queue. Adding extra staff to till points can help to achieve this, however it’s equally important to…

2). Ensure that staff are trained properly

“Queuing time” is actually made up of two elements:

1). The time spent waiting to be served

2). The time spent being served

These two elements together make up total time in the system

Halving service time will have a greater effect in reducing total time in the system than just doubling the number of service positions. This is because adding service positions only reduces waiting time, whereas lessening service time reduces waiting as well as service time.

Measures to reduce service time include:

  • Staff training
  • Service position layout (make sure everything is within reach)
  • Introduction of fast payment methods such as contactless payment and Apple Pay
  • Diverting staff from lower priority activities to manning available checkouts

3). Occupy shoppers once they are in the queue

Queuing, especially at Christmas time, is inevitable in a retail environment. Offering activities in a queue and distracting customers can psychologically make the queue seem to move a lot faster. Distractions include additions such as Tensator’s In-Queue Merchandising, or alternatively entertainment such as providing the news or even visually appealing promotions that can be displayed at the head of your queue using Tensator’s SLQ3000 media screen.

In-Queue Merchandising works especially well during the festive season, as it can be the perfect place to display last minute stocking fillers. These impulse-type sales can be a real revenue generator – in fact, WH Smith in the UK and Staples in the US have reported sales uplifts of between 400% and 1000% for items merchandised in the queue

4). Keep queuing safe, even at peak times

One final tip to improve Christmas retail queuing experience is to make sure it’s safe at all times. Our Tensabarrier® range is great choice here as they help to keep the queue in order and help to reduce customer uncertainty as to where to queue. Posts and belts can be created in any colour to heighten visibility for all customers.

We at Tensator® hope you have a successful Christmas period in your stores! For more information on Tensator® retail queue management products, why not take a look at our brochure? To download, click the image below.

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