3 Must-Have Products for Effective Queue Management
In a world where customer experience and safety are paramount, managing queues efficiently has become more critical than ever. Whether you run a retail store, a healthcare facility, or a busy event venue, a well-organized queue ensures a smooth and positive experience for your customers. Here, we explore four must-have products that will transform your queue management strategies from mundane to masterful.
1. Retractable Belt Stanchions:
The product that has the biggest impact on creating and managing a queue is the retractable belt stanchion. These barriers were designed specifically for creating and managing customer queues and are ubiquitous around the world. In fact, if you are standing in a queue, you are probably standing between a set of retractable belt stanchions. They are equipped with 2” wide belt with a retraction mechanism that rolls the belt up inside the post when not in use. Each stanchion also has three receiver clips allowing the belts to be attached in line and/or at right angles. This enables the classic ‘zig zag’ queue system to be set up that works as an effective tool to guide customers where to get the service they require and ensures that customers are served in the order they arrive. Retractable belt stanchions are versatile, durable, and highly effective at guiding and managing pedestrian flow:
There is a wide range of stanchion types available, but these can be broken down into four categories:
Economy: Typically have a concrete filled galvanized steel base, these stanchions are low cost and best suited for low traffic environments where they are not moved frequently.
Premium: Premium stanchions are designed to give a long service life in heavy traffic venues and feature a cast iron base.
Single Belt: The most common configuration in both economy and premium stanchions. Single belt models are effective at guiding pedestrian flow but can allow some queue indiscipline as customers can duck under the belt to skip the line.
Multiple Belts: Stanchions with two or three belts are designed to stop “line ducking” and help keep children in line. This configuration is recommended in very high traffic environments and where there is a high proportion of children in the queue. The other key feature of multi belt stanchions is that the lower belt acts as a guide for the visually impaired using a cane. This feature makes multi belt stanchions ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliant which is a requirement in many public spaces.
The stanchion range offering the most versatile choice of options is QueuePro by Queue Solutions. The QueuePro range has single, twin, and triple belt options in lengths from 11’ to 35’. The other unique feature of the QueuePro range is that you can choose from no less than nine stock finish options and 30 belt colors. QueuePro has the widest variety of options on the market along with the durability to give a long service life in high traffic areas. With the right placement, retractable belt stanchions make your space organized, ensuring an efficient and pleasant customer experience.
2. Signage and Sign Holders:
Clear communication is the key to a successful queue management system. Signs, whether on stanchions or free-standing sign holders, play a crucial role. These allow you to direct customer flow or inform customers. The key to effective in-queue signage is the ability to quickly change or replace the signs. Here’s what makes them indispensable:
Guidance: An effective queue system needs signage to guide customers where to enter the queue and what to do when they reach the head of the queue such as the classic “Please Wait Here” sign. Although Enter Here and Wait Here signage may seem simplistic and obvious it is critical to prevent customer confusion and to maintain smooth customer flow.
Promotion: The customer queue is an ideal location to provide customers with information on products, services, promotions, or upcoming events. Because the customer is idle when in the queue, they are more likely to engage with messaging and have the time to read more detailed information.
There are many styles of signage designed for use in a customer queue with sign frames being the most popular. These take either a 1/8” or ¼” sign material or alternative paper signs can be used sandwiched between two sheets of clear acrylic. For in- queue use frames with a vertical rather than horizontal orientation are preferable. This is because a vertical frame will not intrude into the queue space as much as a horizontal frame. For the same reason sign size should be restricted for queue use. 7” x 11” up to a maximum of 11” x 14” is ideal, larger than this the sign will impede the customer flow. Also remember that in a queue customers are standing very close to the signage and a large size is not required for visibility.
Effective signage is your silent assistant in managing queues, ensuring that customers are informed and at ease.
3. Storage Carts:
Storage carts are an unsung hero of queue management. They are designed to efficiently move and store stanchions when not in use. Here’s why you need them:
Efficiency: Carts make it easy to move, store, and organize your queue management equipment when not in use.
Protection: They protect your equipment from damage or wear and tear when stored properly.
Mobility: With wheels for easy transportation, you can quickly move a large quantity of stanchions speeding the set up and take down time required allowing you to adapt your queue to changing needs or locations.
There are two types of storage carts. Horizontal carts store the stanchions lying down in tiered racks. This design gives a small footprint but the larger capacity models are up to 7ft high so do not fit through standard doorways. Vertical carts store the stanchions standing up. This takes up more floor space for storage but also gives a low profile so vertical carts can fit through standard doorways.
Don’t overlook the importance of keeping your queue management tools organized and safe when they’re not in action. We would recommend the use of storage carts in any scenario where stanchions have to be removed and stored periodically.
In conclusion, effective queue management isn’t just about moving people from point A to point B. It’s about creating a positive experience, ensuring safety, and optimizing the use of space. With retractable belt stanchions, signage and storage carts you have the tools to manage queues efficiently and enhance customer satisfaction. So, equip your business with these must-have products, and watch your queues transform from mundane to masterful.