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Are queues losing you customers?

Australian consumers are getting fed up with queuing in retail stores, and won't hesitate to take their business elsewhere, according to a new NCR survey.

Almost all of the 1,100 respondents surveyed by the retail technology company say queuing has become part of their daily lives.

Retail checkout queues are of particular concern, causing angst for almost three quarters of respondents. The majority (85 percent) of these blamed lack of checkout staff for the queues. The survey revealed the average Australian wastes about 38 minutes queuing during a typical week, with those aged between 16 and 24 spending an average of 50 minutes or more a week in a queue compared to those 50 and older (32 minutes a week).

Almost three quarters have walked away because of a queue, with 39 percent vowing never to return to offending businesses.More than a third would be happy to serve themselves, and almost 70 percent of respondents felt organisations would offer self-servicing technology as a matter of course.Apart from retail outlets, other areas that scored high for queuing included post offices, banks, airports and fast food outlets.

The queues for returning unwanted Christmas presents also got a special mention.When asked which recent inventions has been a godsend in reducing queuing respondents nominated the ATM, the internet, the airport self-check in, retail self-check out, the ticket dispenser and the car park payment station.

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