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Self-Service Kiosk Best Practices: Placement and Visibility

By Aila Staff

May 11, 2021

Updated May 11, 2021

Interactive kiosks provide safe, convenient, and high ROI way to engage customers in key areas of your brick-and-mortar location. Now ubiquitous across retail, grocery, and hospitality, self-service kiosks are used for things like payments, check-in, product discovery and more. While shoppers love having self-service options, businesses also need to ensure that their kiosks are visible, easy to use, and effective at helping the customer complete their task. Even in a post-pandemic world, touchless workflows and ensuring safe distances will continue to be important. We’ve put together this kiosk best practices guide based on thousands of successful installations with Aila customers. 

Placement and visibility

Setting the scene for a successful deployment

Kiosk visibility is a vital but often overlooked step in many solution deployments. Businesses that are laser-focused on getting the software experience right may neglect physical and environmental factors.

1. Place kiosks at safe distances in high-traffic areas

Kiosks are most often used when they’re located at frequently visited areas. For example, a deli ordering kiosk should be placed near the deli counter, where shoppers are used to going to place their orders. 


However, it’s also a good idea to put kiosks in other high-traffic areas. Consequently, grocers should place deli ordering kiosks at store entrances as well so that shoppers can place their order without having to walk to the back of the store. 

2. Ready your environment

There are several conditions to consider when deploying your kiosks. Things like lighting, surrounding objects, and the kiosk itself can all contribute to whether or not customers notice or use it. 

Studies have shown that lighting can help guide customers through a store. So, make sure the area the kiosk will be located in is brightly lit and that the screen is set to a high brightness setting so that it doesn’t appear to be turned off or “out of order” from afar. 

If your kiosk has a scanner, make sure it is illuminated. Scanners are a call-to-action for customers who want to scan products, cards, or IDs. 

Finally, place the kiosk in an area where it is likely to stand out. A kiosk that is on an already-cluttered counter or shoved between two clothing racks will likely go unnoticed by customers.

3. Sinage

Signs can be an effective way to guiding customers toward your self-service kiosks. Large and easy-to-read signs that are visually prominent and on-brand are ideal. The combination of signage, customer graphics, and colors can also ensure brand consistency and high visibility.

4. Presentation and cleanliness

Maintaining a proper cleaning protocol is important to keeping your self-service solution safe and running optimally. See our display cleaning guide for detailed instructions

5. The “fleet” effect

 A fleet of devices serves as a signal that the area is a “self-service center” and helps drive transactions in that area. By spacing kiosks six feet apart, you can also maintain the CDC’s guidelines for safe distances while maximizing usage.

Kiosk visibility quick tips:

  • Avoid obstructing the kiosk with other objects, such as clothing racks, or signs. Putting the kiosk behind another surface could make it difficult or even dangerous to interact with.
  • Don’t place objects on top of the kiosk. Keep items like hand sanitizer nearby instead. This will avoid having them fall off of the kiosk, causing a hazard on the floor.  


This is part one in a series about kiosk best practices. Check back soon for part two. 

Want a simplified and printable version of this guide to hand out to your employees? Download the Interactive Kiosk Best Practices Guide:

Download the Guide

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