Want to improve your queue? Whether you’re looking to shorten lines or lose fewer customers, you need the science behind waiting to be on your side.
Luckily, there’s an expert for that.
His name is Richard Larson, although he also goes by “Dr. Queue.” Larson is recognized world-wide for his research on queuing theory—and before you ask, yes, that’s a real thing. He’s one of the handful of scientists who look forward to the hour-long lines as amusement parks rather than the rides themselves.
Dr. Queue wiles away wait times by puzzling over what makes waiters content to queue. Larson explores what kinds of waiting environments keep customers happiest, what systems best manage traffic flow, and what causes queuers to bail rather than wait out a long line.
We designed Waitlist Me with queue theory in mind. Take a look at how you can use our app alongside the psychology of waiting to make your customers happier.
Distractions make waits appear shorter
You know the old saying, “a watched pot never boils”? It’s not quite true. The pot always boils; it just seems like it takes longer when you’re staring at it. The same can be said for any sort of wait. It’s why doctor’s offices invest in magazines and restaurants let you hang out at the bar.
Whether you manage an eatery, a store, an office, or a gym, Waitlist Me lets you notify customers when they reach the front of the line. Our text notification feature sets your queuers free, allowing them to find their own distractions until you’re ready for them.
Anticipation improves customer satisfaction
Is the food at a four-star restaurant better than the food at a neighborhood pub? Maybe. But built in to that four-star restaurant’s rating is the anticipation. Whether they’ve been awaiting their reservation or reading review after review, customers are already primed to enjoy their dining experience.
With our public waitlist feature, Waitlist Me lets you keep your diners salivating even if the bread basket is 20 minutes out of reach. You can sync the public waitlist to a TV in your waiting area and include enticing photos and videos along with daily specials.
Managing wait-time expectations leads to happier guests
Calling the cable company has gotten less painful over the last few years, yet we dread doing it. Why? Because we still remember the interminable minutes of hold music with no end in sight. The waits might still be long, but they’re much less tedious now because the companies let you know how many people are in line ahead of you.
Guests want to see a finish line no matter where or when they’re waiting. Waitlist Me’s wait time estimates and comparisons of actual and quote times help hosts and receptionists quote accurate wait times based on real-world data. And, after customers are added to the waitlist, they can check their place in line right from their smartphone.
Social fairness limits anxiety and stress among queuers
The first to arrive in line should be the first served—that’s social fairness. While it’s nice in principle, it doesn’t always make sense for businesses. Sometimes, a two-top that just walked in the door of a restaurant can be seated before a party of four that’s been waiting for 30 minutes.
Waitlist Me offer the appearance of social fairness that guests are looking for. Because our features free your customers from your waiting area, no one’s the wiser about which guest has been queuing the longest.