So I go into FedEx Kinko's, as I usually do, with a very minor task. Today I had to send a fax. The store has signs, employees and office equipment scattered throughout every inch of the space. You would think I could send a fax and be on my merry way?
Haha. I could spend hours railing on the retail outlets of FedEx Kinko's, especially after the merger. But for now I'd like to call attention to an overarching principle they seem to have missed. It's called Hierarchy.
Hierarchy means you pick the most important thing, and it gets the most attention. The second most important thing? The second most attention. And so on. Instead, there are signs throughout the store - some hanging, some resting on surfaces, some posted on walls. Some big, some small. Some relate to entire regions of the store, some refer to just one product. I saw "Office Services" right next to "Colored Paper." These elements are not at the same level in the hierarchy, guys! They should not have the same size sign! I wonder how many people come in for Office Services, versus how many come in for Colored Paper. Hmm. This is an easy way to figure out which signs should be big and which should be small.
Now I would imagine the top level in the hierarchy to be the checkout - it probably gets the most traffic, right? I mean, no matter what service you've come there for, everybody has to pay. I asked an employee "So where do I pay?" He points, "Oh, at the cashier." I turn. It's a big square counter with one woman inside. She's helping some guy figure out how to fax to an international number. One girl is waiting. You would never know this is the cashier. There is no sign.
Let me repeat: there is no sign! Nothing that says Cashier or Check Out Here or Give Us Your Money At This Place. People could miss it and just walk out! I almost forgot I even needed to pay! With signs everywhere, you would think they could make a sign for the cashier! This is Kinko's, they could even make the sign right here in their store!
FedEx Kinko's has enough confusion to deal with, now that they provide every single service that might possibly relate to paper. The least they could do is make sure all their customers are stopping at the cashier. I'm sure the folks at corporate agree that it's a pretty important part of their hierarchy.