Almost every business has a waiting process for customers — whether it be call centers, lines, or waiting rooms. Yet despite the prevalence of waiting, no one particularly enjoys spending their time in lines. If you’re a business looking to improve customer satisfaction, it may be time to look at the experience you’re providing to customers as they wait. As experts in queues and customer service, we’re offering up our top tips for a better waiting experience.

1. Remove the Queue

Without trying to sound dramatic, we think that lineups are over. After nearly a year of avoiding crowds and groups, customers will never again want to wait in lines to receive help or purchase a product. Not only were they unsafe during the pandemic, but lines are also inefficient, time-consuming, and boring. Yes, the British may love their queues, but in the U.S., we just can’t seem to understand why — which is why Qless believes in a queueless world.

If you’re a business looking to improve customer satisfaction with a better waiting experience, our first tip is to remove the physical queue entirely. Apps and software, such as Qless, can create virtual lines where customers can choose to wait from anywhere, instead of being forced into a line. The app will inform them of delays, wait times, and their place in line, allowing them to show up at the exact moment that they will be served. This helps to eliminate wait times for customers and prevents lines from forming. 

2. Improve Communication

Have you ever been stuck at the DMV for hours and no one can update you on how much time remains until your appointment? Have you ever been in a waiting room for hours on end, only to have the business close before you can be seen? We know we have! Not only is it frustrating, but it can also be a huge time-waster. It certainly doesn’t improve customer satisfaction!

Improving this aspect of the waiting experience is extremely easy and effective — all you need to do is communicate. Tell customers how long the expected wait will be, how many people are in front of them, and warn them of any potential problems or delays. Regular communication can assure customers that they are still a priority and that they haven’t been forgotten. Using messaging services, such as an appointment management system, can make updates personal and easy, as they can email or text updates related to the customers’ specific appointment, including their remaining wait time. And since apps can automate these updates, it reduces the workload on your customer service team.

3. Listen to Customers

The easiest way for a business to learn what isn’t working for their customers is to go directly to the source. Asking your customers for feedback during each phase of the customer experience can help you pinpoint specific issues and pain points that are aggravating them. Knowing these and creating strategies to change them can dramatically improve customer satisfaction — and retention. 

In the waiting process, feedback to look out for could include how long the wait period lasts or confusion in regards to the steps to get in line. If you notice consistently long wait times, consider adapting your schedule to increase the number of customer services representatives on the floor at those times. If people are confused about the waiting process, including which line to join for specific issues, improve signage and communication. The customer service industry is changing rapidly, and the easiest way to stay updated is to ask those who are impacted directly. 

Between Qless’s queue management solutions and our appointment scheduling software, we have all the resources you need to create a better waiting experience and improve customer satisfaction. Trust us — your customers will thank you.