Self-service technology, including kiosks with kiosk printers, continues to increase in popularity in a wide range of vertical markets. Retailers of all types, as well as quick service restaurants, gas stations, parking lots, casinos, telecommunications companies, transportation providers, and other organizations, are implementing these solutions.
However, capitalizing on the self-service trend and consumers’ affinity for kiosks in any application – retail or otherwise – necessitates strategic kiosk printer selection. Choosing the right kiosk printer is a matter of understanding the business environment, and customers.
There are seven ‘must-have’ kiosk technologies and accessories that you will find essential, depending on the application:
A presenter increases security and supports customer privacy by ensuring that receipts are delivered only to the right person; if forgotten, they remain inside the kiosk where unauthorized parties cannot access them. The presenter also offers other benefits that make it worthwhile. Perhaps most importantly, the presenter prevents paper jams from occurring if receipts are inadvertently left in the printer. This, in turn, decreases the incidence of operating interruptions that cause customer service delays, and have a negative impact on the customer experience. What’s more, with a presenter, there is no opportunity for receipts or other collateral to fall to the floor if it is not delivered to the intended recipient. The end result is a reduction in litter, and cleaner-looking store, restaurant, or other business environment.
The bezel is an alternative to the presenter. Typically positioned between the kiosk slot and the printer, it acts as a guide to push paper out of the kiosk. If the best kiosk printer for your application is not designed to accommodate a presenter, or there is another reason why a presenter would not work with a particular kiosk printer model (e.g., space constraints), a bezel is a viable solution.
3. Paper status alerts
Kiosks are typically left unattended for extended periods of time. However, you’ll need to know immediately when a kiosk printer requires more paper. Select a kiosk printer that displays alerts when it is low or entirely out of paper.
4. Printing status alerts
Insist on a kiosk printer that’s capabilities include a visual alert to inform customers that their collateral has been printed and is ready for pickup.
5. Digital receipt support
Star Micronics’ offers AllReceipts™, the perfect digital receipt application. Additionally, since the printer is constantly connected to a cloud service, customers will have easy access to a device management service. More information can be found on www.starcloudservices.com and www.allreceipts.com.
Kiosk printer software drivers must be compatible with a given kiosk’s operating system, be it Windows®, Mac®, OPOS, or JavaPOS.
7. Software Development Kits (SDK)
An SDK is necessary if the kiosk printer works on a mobile operating platform – i.e., Android™ or iOS. There is a huge incentive to also offer a digital receipt solution at an unattended kiosk. It reduces the use of paper and helps customers to keep product and retailer information on their mobile devices.