The Sooner the Better: How to Make the Waiting Time Feel Shorter


The actual time an individual spends waiting in line can be accurately measured to the second. But people’s perception of the wait time can be something entirely different.

What feels like two minutes to one person can feel like an eternity to another. That’s why companies who care about the customer experience care about how they can influence perceived wait times just as much as actual wait times.

You have the opportunity to minimize the pain of waiting by making the wait time feel short. There’s what’s real, then there’s what feels real. One key way to make the wait feel shorter is the get customers started sooner. That’s right, but it’s not what you think.

Getting Customers Started Sooner Effectively Ends the Wait

One of the proven ways to reduce perceived wait time is to begin the transaction process before the customer reaches the agent or checkout. So even though they’re not actually being served, they feel they’re being served. The classic example of this is a typical grocery store, where customers begin unloading their carts before it’s their turn to be served.

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Luxury Retailers Take Note: Consumers Want You to Know They’re Coming


Most purchases can now be made online – whenever and wherever. With this on-demand mindset, the in-store experience is transforming too, with a demand for much higher expectations than ever before. For a customer to take their time to physically come into an establishment, they are expecting more than just the opportunity to buy. Customers expect to be treated like a VIP, to be truly served.

For luxury retailers this is great news. Stand out service is the name of the game. So in this case, the convergence of the digital and physical retail worlds is a welcome development. Here the virtual tools for scheduling and communicating can add value before a customer steps foot on site. Once there, service agents can have customer-specific data in hand, present products in the customer’s price range, and desired characteristics. This is not only what the customers want and need, it’s now what they expect.

81% of consumers surveyed for this year’s TimeTrade State of Retail Report would like it if a luxury retailer knew their preferences ahead of their arrival. They would prefer, for example, for a jeweler to be expecting them and know their preferences (such as budget, ring shape, style etc.). This ensures a more personalized and productive experience, making the most of both parties’ time.

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How the Convergence of Digital and Physical Retail Impacts Your Queuing Strategy

digital and physical retail


Today’s standard is on-demand products and services – whenever and wherever.  We rely heavily on the convenience and efficiency of our digital solutions, including online shopping and mobile communications. As consumers we also continue to expect excellence and a highly personalized experience. There is and has been a convergence happening between two worlds – the physical and the digital. For businesses this junction represents an important moving target that demands attention and tending.

Even the heartiest brick and mortar businesses now have branded websites, online stores, and customer relations via email and text. Alternatively, many businesses that have been primarily e-commerce are realizing the need to create a touch-and-feel environment for their customers to enjoy a personal, hands-on experience of their products. These historically separate retail worlds are indeed merging.

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