Many Americans - probably as many as four out of five - haven't yet used a self-service kiosk. However, most of those who have - and even many who haven't - believe that kiosks will improve customer service. This was revealed by a recent survey conducted for NCR Corporation.
Used to serving themselves
Of those respondents who have used a self-service electronic kiosk, nearly half did so at a mall, followed by grocery stores, and then airports. Predictably, younger people who have grown up with the internet and are more comfortable with technology in general are more likely to have used the kiosks.
According to NCR General Manager for Web Kiosks, Nelson Gomez: "In the age of pay-at-the-pump gas stations, self-checkout terminals and ATMs, people are used to serving themselves. Market acceptance of these technologies is making them part of a broader range of services, from retail to transportation. Today people are most likely to use kiosks as part of a retail transaction; tomorrow they'll be banking or checking their portfolios, renewing licenses from government agencies, making hotel reservations or buying plane, train, bus, subway and movie tickets."
Those who have operated kiosks found them easy to use. Ranked on a scale ranging from very complicated to very simple, seven out of ten users find them either very simple or simple to use. Only 3 percent found them very complicated. Most of those who had actually used a kiosk said that they improve service. A third of those who hadn't yet used one agreed. According to Gomez, the fear that technology somehow makes the shopping experience less personal seems to be exaggerated.
The survey, by Opinion Research Corporation International, sampled 1,020 adults, consisting of 500 men and 520 women, 18 years of age or older, living in private households in the United States from June 8-11, 2001.