The Long-Term Return on Investment of a Queue Management System
There is one thing that is top of mind for just about every decision a business makes, and that is the return on investment. If you are going to add a new product or service, implement a new process, or add something to your tech stack, the determining factor for most companies is whether it will improve their bottom line. This consideration is critical because every business is based on results.
Implementing something new to your business can feel like a leap of faith in this regard. If you are adding new technology to your digital infrastructure, it can feel like an inherent risk. However, certain software options can immediately and long-term increase your business’s bottom line, making them well worth the investment cost. One of these software options is a queue management system.
A queue management system is an application businesses can implement to run virtual queues. This customer flow solution enables customers to check into lines from their cell phones, track queue times with accurate projections of waits, and then enter the place of business when it is time for their appointment to begin. This technology reduces the need for physical queues and ensures a smoother, more efficient waiting and appointment process.
QLess is the virtual queue management system leader used by businesses in industries ranging from retail to healthcare. It is a popular tool that leading brands have used due to its ability to improve customer satisfaction and ensure a less congested, more efficient waiting room. But some businesses might have initial hang-ups because they want to know for sure there will be a return on their investment.
Some businesses might not see the direct correlation between a smoother and more efficient customer experience and revenue generation. If that is the case, we’ve got you covered. Below, we’ll explore how QLess and an effective queue management system can directly impact your business’s bottom line and provide a return on investment.
Compete on the Customer Experience
The past several years have seen a transformation in how businesses think. One of the most significant shifts has been an increasing focus on the customer experience. This is now a huge emphasis of modern business. According to Smart Karrot, 89% of companies now compete primarily on the basis of customer experience. That is because providing an excellent experience to your customers is an essential component of growth in every industry.
Happier customers mean better business results, as they are likelier to return to your business and spread positive feedback about your business. According to Adobe, focusing on the customer experience leads to 1.7x higher customer retention, 1.9x return on spend, and 1.6x higher brand awareness. Focusing on this aspect of your business leads businesses to have a large cohort of engaged, happy, repeat customers. Investing in your customer experience is an investment in your business’s success, and that is why QLess stands out as an option that will yield results.
QLess improves the customer experience by empowering the people that frequent your business. Whether it is a doctor’s office or DMV, the waiting experience can be stressful and tedious. With QLess, it is a much less difficult process. Customers can check into appointments from wherever they are using the queue management software. They will automatically be placed in the right line, with wait time updates sent to them through the app or SMS. This means your customers can wait for their appointments from home, the local coffee shop, or a library. The decision is in their hands, significantly improving their waiting experience.
If you can provide a positive customer experience instead of draining long waits, your customers will take note. Keeping your customers happy is how you build a profitable business, and by eliminating the need for crowded waiting rooms and long waits, you will immediately notice an improvement. The QLess waiting line management system drastically improves the customer experience, contributing to an enterprise’s bottom line.
Cut Down on Missed Appointments
One of the negative things that many businesses with an appointment model have grown too accustomed to is missed appointments. These harm a business, but most enterprises look at missed appointments as an unavoidable aspect of dealing with consumers that can be fickle. The impact of missed appointments can be dramatic. When employees block off their time, don’t accept other appointments, and the customer doesn’t show up, businesses lose a lot of money in opportunity costs. According to Risk Management Healthcare Policy, the no-show rate in the healthcare industry ranges from 12-80%, costing the healthcare industry billions annually.
For businesses that are losing money due to missed appointments and customer no-shows, a smart queue management system like QLess is a practical solution to this problem. QLess allows businesses to message back and forth with customers, improving communication in a scalable way. The bi-directional communication features have several aspects that can help businesses cut down on missed appointments without needing a significant time investment.
Businesses can schedule appointment reminders that are sent to customers and require confirmation. They can schedule multiple reminders to come to customers on specific dates and times, including the morning of their appointment. Text message reminders have been found to be more effective and receive more responses than emails or phone calls, so utilizing this form of communication goes a long way. With the communication features, staff can message customers individually for a more customized message or schedule mass messages for simple but efficient communication.
Communication is essential for offering customers more personalized experiences and cutting down on missed appointments. Considering how impactful these can be on a bottom line, businesses will find it is well worth the investment to reduce the number of these no-shows.
Identify Your Weaknesses
Every business has strengths and weaknesses. That is all completely normal and par for the course. But accepting your weaknesses is not something any successful enterprise should do. Improving an operation is a long-term journey that requires a commitment to improvement. Nothing will ever be perfect, but identifying and changing your critical flaws is how you build something that will last. One of the key ways to do this is by employing data and analytics that will reveal to you what your business needs to change.
Data and analytics show businesses the objective truth about where they are succeeding and where they may be coming up short. Many businesses employ data and analytics for aspects of their company, like sales and marketing, but customer experience data is also incredibly valuable. QLess has business intelligence features that provide an accurate look at the customer experience and show businesses what they need to do to drive improvement.
QLess’ customer journey data shows businesses several core metrics that indicate how they are performing. The data from QLess shows businesses their median wait times, appointment no-show percentage, number of customers served in a day, and transaction time. This data can all be segmented and organized, so enterprises can view it according to appointment type, time, the employee that serviced the appointment, and more. The data is all reported back to businesses in graphs and charts that make the information they are reporting easier to understand. This helps businesses spot notable trends and deviations.
The value of this data is significant. It allows businesses to spot areas they need to change to create a smoother customer journey. Understanding your weaknesses plays a major role in improving them, and with this data, you can see where your enterprise may be letting customers down. Once you understand your weaknesses, you can start implementing changes that solve them. This will help trim the excess from your business and create a more efficient operation.
Build Your Brand Reputation
In the world of business, reputation is everything. What people say about you determines who will frequent your business, and if you have a negative public reputation, that will impact your bottom line. The customer experience is a big factor in defining your reputation, as a negative or positive customer experience leads most customers to make the effort to type and post a review. The importance of reviews is not to be taken lightly, and finding a way to maximize the number of positive reviews you receive is important.
Customers’ opinions have a significant impact on the decisions of other customers. According to Trustmary, 93% of customers read reviews before making a purchase, and 58% of consumers would be willing to pay more or travel further to visit companies with good reviews. Negative reviews make a significant impact on swaying customers away from your business, while positive reviews are likely to bring customers in. Receiving these positive reviews will help your business attract the modern consumer’s attention, who typically uses these to inform their purchasing decisions.
QLess has customer feedback features designed to help businesses court more reviews. These are automated pulse feedback requests sent via SMS to customers. These are sent in the form of text links, which redirect customers to Yelp or Google Reviews, where customers then have the option to fill in reviews. The review requests can be set up to automatically send to customers after their appointments. This immediacy ensures your business is top of mind and increases the likelihood that customers will fill in reviews.
Receiving positive reviews is critical. By removing the arduousness of waits, you increase the likelihood that customers will have a positive experience, and by soliciting reviews with an automated request, you increase the likelihood that customers will share that positive experience in a review. Happy customers sharing positive feedback is a driver of business success, and with QLess, you can court a higher volume of these positive reviews.
Improve Process Efficiency and Employee Satisfaction
Having smooth processes is what drives business success. If there are a lot of bottlenecks throughout the day and inefficiencies throughout your operation, you will lose money as a result. Efficiency and maximizing the time you have a day are important. The biggest onus falls on employees, who have to handle a surge of customers and manage a busy appointment calendar. Implementing tools that make these tasks easier will lead to a more efficient operation and higher employee satisfaction.
QLess helps in this regard by increasing the visibility of employees’ day-to-day with an automated digital appointment calendar. The calendar is color-coded and organized by date and time. Employees can tap on their appointments, see the name of the customers, pull up relevant information on them, or message them with questions or updates. The calendar organizes the workday in a way that is clear and easy to understand, with certain appointments represented by certain colors and the ability to filter appointments by the employee responsible for them.
The virtual appointment scheduling calendar is a helpful tool that gives staff a clearer sense of what they need to do throughout the day. It leads to a more organized business where staff are aware of what is ahead, removing some of the chaos and stress from their job. This will not only drive a smoother operation but also ensure your staff is happier. The happier staff is, the better businesses perform. Fortune 100 companies with higher levels of employee satisfaction outperformed their peers in stock market performance by 2.3-3.8%.
A more visible and digitized calendar that can be edited and changed gives businesses a tool that will increase efficiency and drive employee satisfaction. While the virtual queuing solution impacts the customer experience, a digital calendar will improve and streamline the employee experience, which is just as important.
Drive Retention with a Smooth Customer Journey
Acquiring new customers is important, which is why so many businesses allocate such a substantial part of their budgets to sales and marketing. But what is just as important as this is earning customer loyalty. For any business to grow, you can’t just add customers; you have to keep them. Customer churn is an inevitable part of business, but minimizing the number of customers lost is crucial. Strong customer retention results lead to a growing business and loyal customers.
The financial benefits of retaining customers are clear. According to Finances Online, acquiring new customers is 5x more expensive than retaining current ones, and a 5% increase in customer retention can double revenue. While the product or service you offer will play a big role in driving retention, it is also incredibly important that the overall customer journey to receive that product or service is smooth and friction-free.
QLess makes a broad impact here because it eliminates one of the biggest obstacles to a happy customer: long, in-person waits. According to a QLess survey of 250 US adults, 69% of respondents said they would frequent a competitor’s business if it had noticeably shorter wait times, and 76% of respondents said they have left a business due to a long wait. Customers have little patience for physical waits as an aspect of their customer journey, which is why a digital queue management system is so impactful.
Customer journey management software like QLess removes what is likely the biggest roadblock to a smooth customer journey. Long physical queues are boring and impersonal. QLess has been found to reduce wait times for businesses by up to 97%, and customers can benefit from waiting wherever they please. This improvement to the customer journey is likely to drive retention and lower churn.
Move Forward Toward the Digital Future
In every industry, from retail to education, digitization is coming. We have already seen so many changes within the past several decades, and the pandemic has exacerbated the technological tendencies of the average consumer. For a business to succeed now and into the future, it must be built to handle the tech demands of the modern consumer. Today, people want technology integrated with every aspect of their customer experience. They expect omnichannel options for everything from shopping to their doctor’s appointments.
For your business to thrive over the next several years, implementing future-facing software that aligns with the tech preferences of the generations with the most spending power will be a differentiator. The two generations that many industries focus on are Gen Z and millennials. These two generations encompass the ages of 10-41 and will be the dominant spending cohorts over the next few years.
So what does this population like? The simple answer is smartphone technology as a core part of their shopping experience. 98% of Gen Z own a smartphone, and 55% of them use their smartphones for more than five hours every day. Meanwhile, 94.4% of millennials own a smartphone, and they use them for 3.7 hours every day. This is a highly mobile-driven cohort of people, and they expect that their usage of smartphones is reflected in their shopping experience.
More than half of Gen Z use their smartphones in-store to augment their shopping experience and determine their purchasing decisions. Businesses that implement the QLess waitlist app will find that this meets the needs of their mobile-oriented customer base. Implementing the tech infrastructure today that benefits your business in the future is an important step toward digitization and will help appeal to Gen Z and millennial consumers.
Increase Flexibility and Agility of Your Business
One of the most important things for a business that wants to react quickly to change is business agility and flexibility. These determine how your operation can respond to the day-to-day chaos common in appointment-based businesses. If your business is rigid and lacks flexibility, responding to change and adversity will be difficult, causing wait times and operational inefficiencies to pile up. One aspect of the QLess enterprise appointment scheduling software is it enables businesses to become more flexible and respond to changes without causing delays.
The QLess calendar management features allow businesses to adjust their virtual calendar to respond to changes. Not only does the calendar increase visibility, but it can also be altered and automated according to pre-set preferences. The line management features can blend customers with scheduled appointments with walk-in customers, prioritizing customers with appointments or obeying any other established line policy.
The flexibility of these features means that businesses can respond quickly to delayed or no-show customers. Businesses can temporarily move late customers that have messaged them to update their timing out of the line and move them back to the front when they arrive. They can simply remove customers that don’t appear likely to show up out of the virtual queue. The virtual line will automatically update the timing for other customers as these changes occur.
One of the biggest causes of delays in lineups is a rigid calendar. The entire line is impacted if businesses cannot respond quickly to changes like customers being late or not showing up. That is why a fully digital queue that can be edited or automated can make a world of difference. It can improve an enterprise’s intake capacity by making the line more efficient and fast and allow companies to adjust rapidly to the inevitable delays and changes that happen every day in appointment-based businesses.
When running any operation, the most significant factor that guides decisions is the question of money. Any addition or subtraction is looked at based on balance sheets. If you want to build something sustainable, investing in solutions that will yield long-term results is incredibly important. That is why so many businesses have turned their eye to the impact of a queue management system.
A virtual queue management system like QLess can yield a return on investment in several key ways. This software allows customers to wait on their own terms, improving their experience and streamlining the customer journey. This leads to easier customer retention and better online reviews. The business intelligence features enable enterprises to spot core weaknesses, and calendar management creates a more flexible schedule and increases employee satisfaction.
For businesses seeking to implement a solution that will align with consumers’ preferences and easily integrate with existing infrastructure, QLess is the answer. The queue management system is a valuable, versatile software that will provide a significant return on investment for businesses in a range of industries.