“Content is King” is an axiom in the kiosk and digital merchandising industry. However, content is just one of the elements of the overall customer experience.
If you’ve got great content, you’ll want to ensure that the rest of your enclosure looks and works equally as great. That’s where fixture/enclosure manufacturers come in. They’ll ensure that the kiosk unit is attractive, easy-to-use, and accessible for set-up and repair.
The selection of the ideal enclosure supplier is a crucial step. You’ll want to consider the goal of your program and the relative strengths and weaknesses of different providers. Many providers have a Point-of-Purchase (POP) heritage and the design of kiosk and digital merchandising enclosures are part of a larger POP display capability.
Traditional POP displays do not contain electronic components. Those who approach enclosure design strategy from a POP heritage are well-informed of the competing interests of the sponsoring brand, the retailer, and the consumer – this can be a real advantage in retail settings. Other suppliers are dedicated to a kiosk unit-centric approach and solely on projects which include electronic components. Each style of enclosure provider can deliver quality results, but you may realize that one style suits your need better than the other.
Regulation & Industry Best Practice
The American with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements ensure that kiosk implementations are easily accessible by all persons. ADA regulation is a fact of life in the kiosk business. Your enclosure manufacturer should be well-versed in the measurement and spec requirements for compliance.
There is a saying that’s very appropriate to kiosk design, “Professionals only focus on the details, amateurs don’t even know they exist.” Designing enclosures with large-scale electronics is a very different process than designing for standard POP fixtures. Component access, wire routing and heat are all issues that need an experienced design team to consider. Is your provider familiar with the ventilation requirements your unit will have? Will it need a fan or will it function properly with passive ventilation? A common beginner’s mistake is to design the unit without proper thought given to the risk of overheating. Successful design is all about the details.
Most kiosk units are in the field for a minimum of three years, and experienced professionals design the unit with the long-term in mind. Experts will make provisions for easy component changes and select materials that will last throughout the lifespan of the program.
Ability to Work Hand-in-Glove with Other Providers
Finally, a good fixture/enclosure manufacturer will work hand-in-glove with your software provider during the entire project. As mentioned in my earlier posts, you’ll want to find a qualified team that has experience working well together and is led by one key vendor.
When picking your providers, work with them to design your program with the end in mind. Before considering a roll-out, make sure you build a prototype and then pilot it. You will gain valuable knowledge throughout that process that you’ll apply if you choose to push out thousands of units to numerous locations.