Today’s consumers are constantly on the move—whether headed to work, school, the gym, their child’s sports practice, or a gathering of friends, downtime is often far and few between. As this trend progresses and consumers continue to get busier, they’re placing even more value on the convenient services and solutions that make their lives easier.
Online shopping, grocery delivery, buy online pick-up in-store, and self-checkout are just a few of the convenience-focused services that have exploded in popularity over the course of the past decade—and they show no signs of slowing down. Whether picking up dinner for the evening, groceries for the week, the new laptop they ordered, or the parts they need to finish the job they’re working on tomorrow one thing is for sure—consumers want the process to be quick and easy. Automated smart lockers are exactly that.
Designed with the consumer in mind, automated smart lockers are enhancing, complementing, and expanding upon the convenient solutions and processes that consumers have grown to love and rely on across a variety of industries—from retail to food service, package pick-up, and equipment rental.
From online ordering to self-checkout, and in-store pickup, retailers have implemented a number of processes over the years to simplify consumers’ retail shopping experience. In fact, according to the 2019 Kiosk Marketplace Census report, retailers comprise the majority of self-service solution users across industries. While there’s no disputing the impressive rate at which these solutions are being implemented and the benefits they offer, retail smart lockers take convenience one step further by combining the benefits into a single solution that also reduces long lines, wait times, and in-store congestion. Consumers simply place their order and pay online, scan their confirmation email at the smart locker, and retrieve their order when the appropriate door swings open—making the retail experience overall more convenient for consumers.
Whether grabbing a quick lunch during their break from work or picking up a party platter for the big game, consumers want two things when ordering food to-go—they want their order to be correct and they want it to be ready when they arrive to pick it up. Food service smart lockers can help with both. Similarly to retail smart lockers, food service lockers enables consumers to place and pay for their orders online and conveniently bypass the traditional pick-up line in-store. In addition to the convenience factor, consumers receive a unique order code to scan at pick-up to ensure that the order they leave with is actually their own.
As consumers continue to live busier lives, they’re spending less and less time at home. For those who prefer to have orders delivered rather than picking them up in-store, package pick up lockers offer a convenient and secure storage solution—especially for those who live in apartment complexes or are away for long periods of time. Delivery drivers or office administrators simply place the package inside a locker once it arrives and consumers are given a code to scan at the locker to pick it up. Since the solution is completely unattended, it can be accessed 24 hours per day, 7 days per week—making it a convenient solution while still ensuring that consumers’ packages are kept safe.
Smart lockers offer the same secure and convenient pick-up solution for those looking to rent products, technology, and equipment as well. To begin the rental process, customers simply pay for and schedule their rental online, in-app, or at the kiosk-managed locker system. Pick-up is simple and so is returning the rented product when they’re finished using it and their rental period is over—no lines, long waits, or cumbersome paperwork required.
According to the 2019 Kiosk Marketplace Census Report, smart locker pickup software was by far the most frequent upgrades introduced by kiosk manufacturers in 2018. Additionally, smart lockers were also cited as the third best growth opportunity among self-service solutions. As consumers continue to place value on the convenient solutions that make their lives easier, it’s safe to say that smart lockers and other self-service solutions will continue to be implemented across a variety of different verticals—from retail, to food service, package pickup, and equipment rental—at an impressive rate.
To learn more about Meridian’s smart locker solutions, visit www.meridiankiosks.com or give us a call at 866-454-6757.