The Rise Of Self-Serve

I was standing in line at the ATM. There were four people in front of me. I estimated a five or six minute wait. Through the glass door I saw two tellers with no one in line. But I waited for the ATM machine, nonetheless. I suspect you do the same.

Our world is very quickly moving toward a self serve environment. Customers prefer the privacy and control of doing it themselves. They will even tolerate inefficiency – just think of how long you will try to scan that tomato soup can in the self checkout line, instead of just going to the cashier.

Efficient and effective self-service is the new frontier for entrepreneurs. In addition to a great customer service phone line, you need easy to navigate FAQs that answer all the questions (including the infrequent ones). In addition to detailed product descriptions on your online store, you need pictures and videos at the level a customer would experience if they were actually holding the product. In addition to real live service (e.g. tellers and cashiers), you need automatic self-serve too (e.g. ATM’s and self checkout scanners).

It’s the rise of the self-serve nation. Cater to us, or be left behind.


1 thought on “The Rise Of Self-Serve”

  1. I don’t know, Mike. I personally HATE (yes, HATE) the self-service line at the store. It’s even worse now that California has taken away my ability to purchase alcohol there. I feel that it’s much slower than having someone actually scan my stuff and fill up a bag.

    The truth is, I have been making a living catering the other way. Sure, there’s still some self-service in what I do, but I’ve taken a lot of it away. I’ve put on the white gloves, and I’m getting down to business with my customers, face-to-face while the other guys let their clients do it all flying solo online. I’m making magic, mostly because what I do is something my clients have never done before (throw a big ‘ol wedding reception).

    I have nightmares about how many times I scanned that can of tomato soup…

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