The self-service kiosk has become a familiar sight near movie theaters and in church lobbies. With these kiosks, which generally feature touch screen displays and credit card swipers, people can either make a donation to their church, buy movie tickets, or get passes printed. There are even a few hotels with automated check-in kiosks that dispense room keys for guests who have already made a reservation. While kiosks may have various features on their exteriors, they generally contain standard computer equipment or credit card terminals on the inside.
Most consumers likely made their initial “kiosk encounter” as part of the airline check-in process, where they were able to print boarding passes and check bags. Although the process with airlines is not exactly self-service, since an attendant generally interacts with the customer, people have become more and more accustomed to making transactions with unattended kiosks.
In the realm of credit card processing, the donation kiosk in a church is becoming increasingly popular. These kiosks allow parishioners to make a cashless donation. Some kiosks even print out a receipt that can be placed in the basket as it is passed around. Some of the advantages with donation kiosks is that they can accept debit or credit cards, can be programmed to make recurring donations, and can even offer choices for which fund receives the donation. Therefore, if a person wanted to specify that the monies went to a mission, church camp, or specific cause, then there would be options pre-programmed into the kiosk software.
By the same token, non-profit “giving kiosks” are also becoming more commonplace at charity events. These kiosks may either operate on hard-wired internet connections or encrypted WiFi channels so they can authorize credit cards securely. Kiosks with wireless credit card processing equipment offer a mobile alternative for fundraising events that may tour through several cities in a year.
What goes into a kiosk? In many cases, kiosks may consist of a computer, touch screen, printer, and credit card swiper, all of which are built into a freestanding case. The important things to remember when ordering a kiosk are location, communications, and usage. If a kiosk is to be located outdoors, it must be weatherproof and secure. Kiosks must have access to internet connections or phone lines. They must have PCI-DSS compliant software for security. The kiosk itself must be user-friendly so people can quickly make their transactions in case there is a line behind them.
Kiosks work best in places where people have accepted the technology and don’t miss the “face to face” interaction traditionally found at church or charity events. Many non-profits and churches have found that donations are proportionally higher from kiosks than traditional cash giving. Capital Processing Network can help you get the best rates for credit card processing whether you are using a kiosk or traditional credit card machine. We have solutions that work with POS systems, wireless terminals, and virtual terminal software in addition to kiosks and other self-service payment channels.