Airports have already embraced digital technologies in their success strategy. Yet, they are continuously looking out for tools to further enhance the overall customer experience. Since customer experience is the primary focus of an airport, it is essential to focus on opportunities for providing efficient communication, real time information, individualized services and self-service.
In these terms, what’s next for airports? How can they find better ways to encourage customer loyalty, ease stress associated with travelling and aim for an overall positive experience?
At an airport, customers spend most of their time waiting in between queues for check-in, baggage, customs and gate boarding. According to statistics, it is a proven fact that LED signs can reduce perceived waiting times by up to 35%. So why not implement digital screens throughout these waiting areas? Displaying news, weather updates, sports updates and other videos around an airport will entertain passengers while they wait in queues and can distract their attention in case of flight delays.
On a similar note, airports are also looking at LED screens to be used as digital art works – to create an environment that helps escape the airport boundaries. Massive LED panels are integrated into centralized areas for maximum exposure and to entertain passengers through waiting times. The artwork could focus on picturesque scenes, animation and geometric shapes, all of which rotates through a 24 hour cycle.
Finding your way through an airport is quite a confusing, frustrating and stressful task. LED signs can provide clear instructions for visitors to easily navigate through an airport and find their way to a flight or even a cup of coffee. This helps passengers reach their destination in an airport in a timely manner and is also helpful for airport staff and general operations. Wayfinding on LED displays is a priority for an airport to manage flow and efficiencies all across the airport. Further advances in technology provides more opportunity for airports to better manage these communications at different levels.
Placing an interactive kiosk with step-by-step directions and a detailed map lets your visitors get to their destination in an efficient manner while also allowing airport employees to do an effective job.
Another important priority for airport authorities is that of security. Electronic signage acts as an emergency alert system so as to raise awareness of emergency situations throughout the airport. A centrally controlled system can display critical messages immediately on all LED screens, thereby making it possible for passengers and employees to better respond to the situation.
Displaying fresh content is the key to engaging viewers. Airports can do so by making use of brand-owned and user-generated content. Furthermore, airports can incorporate photo sharing, hashtags, brand activation and exploring opportunities with virtual reality to further engage customers.
With over 3 billion globally active users, the power of social media is huge! By making use of the classic ‘selfie’, a physical Instagram moment can be created – which will provide free marketing and increase customer engagement. If social media is used well, it can help in creating trust, engaging visitors and also to generate traffic to social media networks of airports and other advertisers.
Another way to engage viewers throughout the terminal is by increasing visual communications. At airports, it is considered a major competitive advantage to incorporate digital communication that enhances the visibility of services available. Hence airports should develop a range of digital content throughout terminals to keep up with passenger expectations and provide a better visitor experience.
The extent to which advertising opportunities are offered in an airport environment is unmatchable indeed. Extremely high passenger traffic, high dwell time and sensitive emotion means 42% of passengers are more likely to indulge in an impulse purchase. As a result, there is increased revenue for airport tax-free shops, restaurants and bars, simply by offering pre-flight and gate-side promotions.