The image below is a sample of a complimentary app Here2There Software created for an exhibition floor at a digital signage expo. Gives directions to and from exhibitor booths.
Wayfinding can be defined as spatial problem solving. It is knowing where you are in a building or an environment, knowing where your desired location is, and knowing how to get there from your present location. Wayfinding encompasses all of the ways in which people orient themselves in physical space and navigate from place to place.
Even in this modern era of technology, the most popular means of wayfinding is static signage. Universities and hospitals are very public and high traffic environments but still reliant on floor lines, staff assistance and posted signs as the solution to traditional wayfinding.
The hindrance in upgrading to an interactive system used to be cost, with most projects exceeding the $25 k mark. The release of programs like Wayfinding Pro (www.wayfindingpro.com) has given subscribers the ability to build a complete wayfinding system for only dollars a month. Wayfinding apps can now be created on any budget for web, kiosk and mobile access to interactive navigation.
In addition to a more manageable price, digital wayfinding has evolved as well. What used to be line and text directions alone are now searchable directories, QR code generation and location based content, emergency alerting, advertising and content management integration.
Clients now have the power of choice and the advantage of low cost at their fingertips. Wayfinding can be offered by integrators like digital signage companies, as an additional product or integrated into their DS software. End users can purchase Wayfinding Pro, build their own system and offer navigation to their public. Distributors including companies like LGE and Lenovo, can combine wayfinding with their package offering and resale on a large scale. Wayfinding has become extremely versatile and is flexible enough to fit every corner of the market.
Prospective wayfinding candidates with a larger budget at their disposal such as hospitals and universities, can sub contract the design and development to experts like Here2There Wayfinding (www.here2theresoftware.com). H2T handles project management, development, design, integration and implementation at the direction of the client. Services like these put control in the clients hands while easing potential work load involved in designing a wayfinding project.
Interactive wayfinding is now viable and within reach for any organization seeking to offer or resell the system. Digital apps will replace static signage within the next 5 years, will you be ahead of the curve?
Interactive wayfinding is a fairly new concept, but is rapidly gaining familiarity and exposure. Wayfinding used to mean lines drawn on hospital floors, arrows pointing in various directions on campus and the time of staff consumed with assisting lost visitors, students and patients. Wayfinding has since transformed to become a convenient digital service that provides step by step text and line directions to any point indoors or out. Furthermore, digital wayfinding has expanded to offer smart phone access, department and staff directories, points of interest, “themed” routes for shopping and tours and even provides real time emergency alerts to ensure the safety of all users. Needless to say, wayfinding has advanced a lot.
Digital signage is also an easily recognizable service. You see it everywhere in cities and malls. Signage powered by computers. But what is interactive digital signage? Interactive DS is what you would imagine when someone mentions a “Digital concierge”. This is a service that you can interact with to learn what a restaurants specials are, what the hottest sales at the mall are or which events you should attend at the pier. Interactive digital signage is especially beneficial when placed in hotels.
So what happens when interactive wayfinding and interactive digital signage team up? SQ Link. A service that provides its users with local events, entertainment, dining, boarding pass access, flight times, transportation, internet browsing and interactive maps.
Imagine being able to upgrade your concierge services with a fast, reliable and visually impressive flat display showing an interactive map of your hotel and local area. Not only could you display the map, but you could enable your guests to scan a QR code or type in their number to have the directions accessible by phone.
Outside of providing local dining and entertainment options, SQ Link could be a potential additional revenue stream for your hotel. Any of the bars, restaurants, stores or events local to you could be featured as a first search result or on a rotating add, at a cost you set.
SQ Link is also completely customizable. You decide what colors and graphics are displayed, how the interface is laid out and you manage the content.
Managing the wayfinding aspect of the application is also easy; and with Wayfinding Pro you can build the system yourself with ease.
Interactive Wayfinding and digital signage is becoming a big part of the hospitality industry. Provide your guests with the convenience of all local info at their finger tips and generate an additional revenue stream for your hotel. Talk about easy money.