Just as every other major technological advancement has before it, mobile technology has had an astounding impact on the way businesses operate. Whether you’re looking at huge Fortune 500 companies, a mom-and-pop operation, or a thriving start-up, the impact that mobile devices have made is unmistakable.
Those impacts have undoubtedly changed things for the better. Through these technologies, companies have increased their efficiency and productivity by streamlining processes, enhanced customer service options, and lowered daily overhead costs. Here’s a look at how mobile technology in general, and tablets in particular, is being put to use in today’s business world.
Some companies are utilizing tablets to expedite lines and decrease wait time for customers. For instance, restaurants in New York City’s JFK and LaGuardia airports have installed tablets throughout its terminals. Customers can order food directly from their terminal through those tablets. Once their order is placed, all travellers have to do is sit back and wait for their food to come to them, within ten minutes.
This practice greatly reduces the congestion that so commonly occurs in airport restaurants and makes the entire process easier for airport-goers. The tablets also allow users to check their flight status, play games, read articles, and more.
Through the help of a handy app, America’s favorite coffee retailer, Starbucks, has begun taking orders, as well as payments, through mobile devices, including tablets and smartphones. This snappy app allows customers to custom design their beverage of choice, and produces a bar code that the cashier scans at checkout. It’s also tied to a loyalty program, which keeps track of each user’s spending and offers incentives accordingly. It’s outrageously easy to use, which attributes to its massive success.
This system cuts down on the typical frustrating conundrum of the inexperienced or slow-ordering patron holding up the line of coffee-hungry commuters in the morning. The app shaves enough time off the ordering process to enhance the entire process for Starbucks lovers.
It is becoming more and more common these days for retailers to utilize digital signage to display product descriptions and pricing in their stores. Kohl’s, for one, has many sales and specials that rotate throughout the month. For this reason, it makes sense that it uses digital signage. This new method nixes the outdated paper signage that previously had to be manually changed when each sale started and expired.
Other companies are mounting tablets on walls and desktops as a way of presenting a message, display advertising, scheduling, and more. Sometimes, these messages are displayed through a static photo, while others use rich media or looping videos to convey their messages. This option is a relatively inexpensive way to put information in the hands of the targeted audience in a relevant setting.
Some industries, namely car dealerships, have begun to use tablets throughout the sales process. Thanks to the convenient hand-held devices, potential buyers can now walk through their entire loan application and approval process right on the showroom floor. While perusing the inventory with a seasoned professional, customers can discuss the details of the vehicles they are interested in, with the added resource of the World Wide Web at their fingertips.
A seamless buying process triggers a certain degree of impulse buying in consumers as well. That is, it eliminates the need to step away from the potential purchase and meet with a loan specialist, letting the gravity of the purchase sink in. Consumers are more likely to follow their instincts and make their purchases on the spot this way. With that in mind, the presence of tablets on the showroom floor is proving to be instrumental in driving annual sales for dealerships everywhere.
As you can see, tablets are revolutionizing the way we do business, just as the computer changed things a few decades before it. These four ways really only represent the tip of the iceberg, so to speak. Have you encountered businesses using tablets in their day-to-day operations? Who was your experience? Please share your thoughts with us in the comments below.
Author Bio: Joe Fortunato is a freelance writer from Tampa, Florida. He enjoys learning about new subjects, following his Baltimore Orioles, and traveling the country for fishing. You can find Joe on Twitter at @joey_fort.