Thursday, June 20th, 2019 .

True or false: Customers hate waiting.

Answer: False.

No, really: Customers don’t hate waiting. At amusement parks, they’ll wait all day. What customers hate is where they do all the waiting. Stick them in a bland doctor’s office waiting room and they’ll get twitchy in 2 minutes flat. Give them an area to explore, a space that’s an experience in itself? Well, then the wait becomes part of the ride. And you don’t have to run a theme park to tap into that kind of magic.

Why your waiting room is terrible

Most queueing areas are like purgatory. They’re awkward spots your customers dread sitting around in while they await the main event. They’re a no man’s land. They don’t look or feel particularly like your business, and they don’t look or feel like any place your customer wants to spend time in.

That’s not good for your bottom line. The moment your guests begin feeling uncomfortable or unhappy is the exact time you start losing money. They become frustrated, and they take that frustration out on you and your staff. Sometimes, they walk out the door without giving you the chance to win them over.

Why?

Because whether you intend to or not, a bland, uncomfortable waiting area signals that your business doesn’t prioritize the experience of your customers. The waiting room is the first chance you have to wow them. And right now, you’re squandering it.

How to make your first impression a good one

Forget about hiring an interior designer and picking new paint colors. We have a different change in mind, and it doesn’t have to cost you a penny.

Waitlist Me is an app that handles waitlists and reservations for all sorts of different businesses, including restaurants, retail stores, and doctors’ offices.

How can a waitlist app transform your waiting area, win over customers, and help you make more money? Easy: by improving the first interaction they have with your business and making the time they spend waiting better.

Here’s how Waitlist Me changes your customers’ waiting experience for the better:

Wait from anywhere

Your customers are busy. With Waitlist Me’s same-day reservations feature and add-yourself web widget, they can jump on line without wasting time.

Set them free

Untether your guests from your hostess stand or check-in desk thanks to our text notifications feature. It lets them window shop or run errands without losing their place it line.

Make your business more attractive

Fewer customers standing around in your waiting area means fewer walk-outs due to long, visible lines and a less cramped, more inviting space for those who do prefer to wait inside.

More flexibility

Running behind schedule is stressful enough. With our simple response feature, guests don’t have to worry about missing their spot. When you notify them by text, they can respond and let you know they’re on their way.

Smarter wait times

What’s worse than a long wait? A wait that’s even longer than the estimate. As hosts use Waitlist Me and can see their quoted times next to actuals, it becomes easier to quote more accurate waits.  

Contact us for a free trial and see how Waitlist Me can help improve your customers’ waiting experience today!

Wednesday, June 5th, 2019 .

Rates of stress, depression, and anxiety have only increased across the globe thanks to a variety of factors, from work to politics to personal matters. And guess what? Most people aren’t actively working to alleviate the causes of their symptoms. That means that on a good day, one out of every two people walking through your door is one big stress mess. Yikes.

What does all that mean for you and your business? Nothing good. Stress, anxiety, and depression…

  • Encourage customers to stay home
  • Turn people into penny-pinchers
  • Make them put off maintenance-type appointments, like healthcare and car servicing appointments
  • Prevent guests from enjoying themselves when they do go out

Sure, you can’t eliminate the sources of their stress. However, you can make your place of business into more of a refuge from the stress of their everyday life. Keep reading for tips on how you, as a business owner or manager, can help your customers stress less.

Rearrange your space

No one wants to be in the way. Unfortunately, if you haven’t thoughtfully designed your waiting area layout with your waiting customers in mind, chances are someone will be.

To solve this problem, spend some time watching the way your guests use the space you’ve given them. Where do they tend to stand? Where do they most frequently sit? What space isn’t being utilized? When do people look awkward or uncomfortable? Then, change up your waiting room’s layout based on those observations.

Offer up directions

The momentary panic of walking into a new destination and having no clue where you should go or who you need to check in with or what the heck is going on is real. That same panic sends adrenaline coursing through your veins, which elevates your stress levels and dings the effectiveness of your immune system—all because there was no clear signage!

Forget that. Ensure your guests know what to expect and where to go when they arrive if there isn’t someone to greet them. A sign on the door or on a placard placed in the entranceway or by a check-in desk or kiosk is an excellent improvement.

Turn down the volume.

You don’t have to run a spa to provide your guests with a calmer experience when they walk inside. If your business is in a busy area, consider window coverings that will dampen the sound of outside traffic. If you receive a lot of phone calls, try switching your desk attendant to a headset or using flashing lights rather than a loud ringer.

Also: ditch clocks that audibly tick, oil squeaky door hinges, and put felt pads on the feet of screeching metal chairs.

Change the channel

If your waiting area includes televisions, select programming that’s more likely to take your customers’ attention off whatever is worrying them. Instead of news, finance, or health-related shows, go with lighter fare. Think: home design, cooking shows, or sitcom reruns.

Radio more your style? The faster the music is, the more stress it will cause your guests. Instead of more jarring pop hits or dance beats, go with oldies, singer-songwriters, or classical music.

Rework your waiting system

Want your guests to enjoy every minute in your place of business? Looking to prioritize their needs and prove that you’re really listening to them? Seeking to cut walk-outs and improve the overall efficiency of your enterprise?

We developed Waitlist Me to help you hit all these goals. Waitlist Me is a free app that lets you manage your waitlist and reservations better. It lets you notify guests by text when they’ve reached the front of the line, eliminating the fear that they’ve missed their moment. It also lets you take notes on their special requirements or concerns, so you can make sure they aren’t forgotten.

And that’s just the beginning! Our full set of Premium and Pro features are crafted to give your customers the best experience possible, all while helping you run a better, faster, more cost-effective business. Decrease customer stress, make more money—how does that sound? Answer: Awesome!

Tuesday, May 28th, 2019 .

With Memorial Day Weekend in our rear-view mirror, we are psyched to see what summer has in store. While all of us at Waitlist Me are enthusiastic about not waiting—and making every wait as painless and speedy as possible—we have to admit that we get a kick out of seeing what folks are itching to see and do, no matter how much time they have to spend in line.

What’s cracking us up, making us scratch our heads, and inspiring us to buy tickets this season? Here are the top-five crazy (and crazy-awesome) things people are waiting for this summer:

#1. A bucket of cookies at the Minnesota State Fair

Nearly 2 million people visit the Minnesota State Fair in the Twin Cities every year. The massive fair grounds have everything you could want in a fair, from giant sculptures made out of butter to an ax-throwing contest. They also have Sweet Martha’s famous chocolate chip cookies, available by the bucket-full. Last year, the line for these cookies was 45 minutes long.

#2. A ticket to see Shakespeare

Much ado about nothing? Not so say the theatre fans who wait (and wait and wait) for tickets to see Shakespeare in the Park in New York City. Each year, New York’s Public Theater puts on two shows outside in Central Park, soften starring big-time actors like Morgan Freeman and Anne Hathaway. How long is the wait? Who knows! Some line up the night before the free tickets are distributed.

#3. Exclusive merch at Comic-Con

With so many celebrities making it to San Diego for Comic-Con, you don’t have to be a certified geek to geek out over this event. It’s four days of panels, signing events, screenings, and, of course, all sorts of merchandise you can only get your hands on here. The lines themselves have taken on legendary status. Some of them even have their own Twitter accounts (we’re looking at you, Hall H)!

#4. To watch a little match play at Wimbledon

This summer, we’re certain of exactly one thing: There is no event that takes its lines more seriously than Wimbledon. While the Brits are certainly well-known for their queueing style, only this pinnacle of fastidiousness offers up a 30-page guide to lining up for tickets. Some wait all night (hear ye, hear ye: tents larger than a 2-person are forbidden). Some show up just before dawn, their fingers crossed that they’ll be among the first 500.  

#5. To leave the Nevada desert

If you’re looking for an experience this summer, you can surely find it at Nevada’s Black Rock Desert. In late August, that’s where the Burning Man festival sets up camp. After the titular man is burned—don’t worry, he’s not an actual person—it can take 6 to 8 hours to get out of Black Rock and even longer to get to the nearest city. This annual leaving is so massive that it has its own name: the Exodus.

Is your business ramping up this summer?

Use a waitlist and reservation app like Waitlist Me to manage your queues better and make your customers happier campers, no matter where, when, or why they’re hanging out in line. You can get started for free today and access features including text notifications, smart ETAs, and multi-location management.

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2019 .

With legalization on the legislative docket across the company, cannabis businesses are the retail industry’s rising stars. Dispensary success stories dot the landscape from the forests of Maine to the beaches of California. In fact, Business Insider names marijuana-related businesses as the fastest growing job sector in the United States.

What does that mean for you? One word: competition. The key to coming out on top? Two words: customer service.

Adding a waitlist and appointment app like Waitlist Me to your arsenal of business tools is an easy way to improve customer experience and loyalty and to increase your referral clientele. Plus, you can get started today for free!

Read on for five ways Waitlist Me can help you run a better marijuana business.

Let customers browse while they wait

A store loaded with interesting edibles feels like a grown-up candy store! Indulge your customers’ desires to take it all in without forcing them to give up their spot in line.

With Waitlist Me, guests can add their names to a digital queue. Then, they can delve into your merchandise, exploring their options and coming up with questions for your staffers. When one of your sales associates is free to assist them, customers will get a text on their smartphone letting them know their turn has arrived. Waiting has never been so simple!    

Welcome new customers to your store

A dispensary isn’t like other stores offering consumable goods. There are all sorts of variables new customers need to be educated about. Who better to guide them than your expert staff?

Waitlist Me frees up your staff so they can worry about one customer at a time. The app keeps track of your line—and lets queuers know their ETA—so that your employees don’t have to. This ensures that each person who steps into your store feels special and can ask every question they have about your products, no matter how small.

Bonus: Eliminating the need for staffers to juggle all the customers in your store will cut down on stress and improve sales results thanks to personalized, one-on-one attention.

Eliminate the wait for walk-ins

For regulars who know what they want and are on a tight schedule, Waitlist Me is what they’re waiting for.

Our app offers a web widget that businesses can easily place on their website. The web widget lets customers jump in line from wherever they are, like their office cubicle or a bar a few blocks over. That means less waiting around in your store for a clerk and more time enjoying life.

Introduce new treats

As the cannabis industry continues to grow, new products continue to pop up every day. Hosting in-store parties and tastings for these fresh goodies let your local community know what’s new. Waitlist Me lets you manage these crowded events with ease.

With Waitlist Me’s kiosk mode, you can let guests check themselves in as soon as they enter your store. Then, they can browse and mingle until you’re ready to show off your new wares. Our public waitlist feature, which customers can access on their phones and on in-store monitors, keeps them updated on their place in line.

Match shoppers with expert staffers

Have customers looking to ease medical complaints? How about newbies not sure where they should start? While some can help themselves, others need more guidance. Waitlist Me is here to help you help them.

Waitlist Me allows you to assign customers to certain employees. If you have associates with expertise in different areas, you can make sure that they help the customers who have questions they can answer best.

Wednesday, May 8th, 2019 .

Owning or managing a business today is significantly more stressful than it was 10 years ago. So is being a human living in 2019.

We’re more stressed now than we’ve ever been before. Blame it on politics. Blame it on the economy. Blame it on your zany Aunt Maude. Regardless of the numerous places our stress is coming from, we know one place that can use some improvement in the stress department.

The bustle! The noise! The tight squeeze! There are all sorts of ways your waiting room could be skyrocketing your customers’ stress levels. Want to prevent walk-outs and increase customer loyalty? Here are three stressful problems in your waiting area and easy, inexpensive ways to fix them today.

A wall-to-wall wait

Achieving the right level of fullness is an art. An empty parking lot at 7 p.m. on a Friday night sends the wrong signal to hungry diners. But a jam-packed foyer? That sends a message, too, one that might intimidate a walk-in.

Stressor: The line is so long! I’ll be waiting forever!

Quick fix: Vacate your waiting area just enough by using Waitlist Me to notify guests when you’re ready for them. This leaves them free to explore the area while they wait—and keeps new customers feeling like they won’t be waiting an eternity.

“Was that me?” worries

A little background music, ordering drinks at the bar, nodding along to a conversation—it doesn’t take much to distract guests from a long wait. However, those little distractions come with their own problems.

Stressor: Did they call me already? Did I miss my table?!

Quick fix: Replace bulky buzzers and hovering hostesses with text notifications through our waitlist app. That way, your guests will be notified in a manner that suits them best. Plus, our public waitlist feature allows customers to check their place in line on a TV display in your waiting area or directly on their phone. That reduces the anxiety over how-much-longer ETAs.

Invisible customer syndrome

Hey, mistakes happen! But when you’re using a messy grease board or a hard-to-read, handwritten appointment book to keep track of your waitlist, mistakes happen far more frequently than if you brought your business into the 21st century.

Stressor: Um, excuse me? Did you forget about me? I’ve been waiting an hour!

Quick fox: Nobody wants to feel invisible, and nobody wants to hang out in a foyer for 25 minutes before realizing they’ve been skipped by accident. With a digital waitlist, you can cut down on those negative experiences. Waitlist Me is straightforward. Think: One easy-to-read list and zero confusing scribbles. With a single glance, hosts can see exactly who’s waiting for what sort of table, how long they’ve been tapping their toes, and when you can get them seated.