3 April 2019

“We really like the look and feel of the hardware and it performs very well for the tasks we ask of it. We have not previously had an integrated EPOS system, but the AURES terminals are so much better than our previous old-style tills, giving us the ability to capture all our membership data in once place and move away from a stand-alone membership system.”

Scott BINSKIN, Finance Director, Wingham Wildlife Park

Just a short hop from the historic cathedral city of Canterbury, Wingham Wildlife Park is one of Kent’s fastest growing attractions. Opening its doors in 1986, it began life as Wingham Bird Park. But in 2008, a change of owners brought a change in direction, with rapid expansion focusing on introducing new species and widening the park’s appeal to new audiences.

Nowadays, a trip to Wingham Wildlife Park means coming face to face with lions, tigers, wolves, moon bears, reptiles, flamingos, penguins and much more. With a huge 3,300 sq ft, three-level indoor soft play facility, an outdoor play park, mini diggers and go karts also adding to the fun, Wingham has become a major destination for all the family. Open every day of the year bar Christmas Day, it welcomes hundreds of thousands of visitors annually.

Changing EPOS Needs

Like many leisure attractions, Wingham needs point of sale solutions for a diverse range of sales operations, from ticketing and memberships to food and drink to gifts and souvenirs.

But as of 2018, although it had tills in its ticket offices, cafes and in its gift shop, the park still had no integrated, networked EPOS system and bulky hardware was taking up precious space in catering and retail outlets. Wingham’s operators decided it was time for an upgrade, so they turned to attraction ticketing specialist DigiTickets, which was already supplying their online ticket portal.

“Wingham Wildlife Park has worked with DigiTickets for around six years now,” said Scott BINSKIN, the park’s Finance Director. “When we were looking at installing an EPOS system, I told DigiTickets what I required and the challenges I had, like not having the site networked and not having the space for servers. They provided me with a service that works via the cloud, which cuts down on bulky equipment, makes it easier for us to manage different services across the site, provides a better interface for staff and overall helps us to deliver a better experience for customers.”

“DigiTickets stood out from the rest of the companies, and it also made it easier that they were already providing my online shop. I believe they provide a very friendly but professional service and they are always at the end of the phone if I have any problems or concerns.”

Founded in 2010, DigiTickets has established itself as a market leader for online ticketing within the leisure sector, working with zoos, theme parks, aquariums, museums, tour operators and a range of different seasonal attractions. But understanding that leisure destinations sell more than just tickets, the company has also focused on supplying on-site EPOS solutions, with the aim of uniting admissions, membership, retail and hospitality in a single, simple to use platform.

Jamie Faulkner, Head of Client Services at DigiTickets, said: “Ticketing and EPOS is a core part of any attractions business. Our clients face the challenge of ensuring they offer their customers the best possible experience when they arrive at the attraction. We specialise in offering the best possible customer journey, which is constantly improved using market leading analytics.

“We help by managing ticket dates, times and time slots to allow the customer to plan their day conveniently, whilst allowing the attraction to manage their customer flow and avoid unnecessary queues. This approach maximises our client’s ticket sales and makes for an enjoyable customer experience.”

Jamie added that, as in the case of Wingham Wildlife Park, what many operators really want is a unified approach across all points of sale to help them drive efficiency and service wherever the customer happens to be.

“Wingham’s main requirement was for an all in one solution for their entire site, which included membership, retail and catering,” said Jamie. “We met their requirements by using DigiTickets’ wide range of functionality to build a solution which adapts to their needs.”

AURES: Part of the solution

In revamping Wingham’s EPOS system, DigiTickets also installed brand new AURES YUNO terminals on which to run its cloud-based ticketing and sales platform.

“DigiTickets has chosen AURES as our preferred hardware provider for several years,” said Jamie. “We feel that the hardware offers our clients a robust, durable and design-led EPOS platform on which to serve their customers and run their businesses.”

In total, 12 YUNO terminals were installed at Wingham – four at reception selling day tickets and memberships, two in the Gift Shop, two in on-site cafes, three in food and drink concessions at the park’s various play areas, and a third in a smaller snack and drink hut. Another YUNO was installed in the cafe at Wingham’s sister attraction, Sandwich Wildlife Park.

Scott said: “We really like the look and feel of the hardware and it performs very well for the tasks we ask of it. We have not previously had an integrated EPOS system, but the AURES terminals are so much better than our previous old-style tills, giving us the ability to capture all our membership data in once place and move away from a stand-alone membership system.

“I believe we are still in a transition from the old systems to the new ones, but as soon as this is complete, it will enable us to have a streamlined process all in one place. It now makes reporting very easy for senior management compared to the old system where we had to have a laptop and manually adjust the tills individually. I love being able to run a simple report to see how we are doing at any point and being able to make changes in the back office, like a price change, that are immediately deployed in a live environment. It saves a huge amount of staff time.”

Jamie added: “The way that attractions manage their customer journey is changing constantly. AURES offers us innovative solutions which help our clients improve their admission and retail offering.

“Wingham has used DigiTickets and AURES hardware for all areas, so far the solution has been durable, reliable and improved their operations massively. They are very pleased with the solution, it has improved queue times, revolutionised membership and continues to provide a seamless operation.”

AURES YUNO Unit Highlights

The AURES YUNO combines robust performance with stylish, compact design, making it a flexible choice for use in a wide range of retail and hospitality settings.

Available with a choice of three different processors, the YUNO features a shock- and scratch-proof PCAP touchscreen monitor, either a standard 4:3 15.1’’ screen or a 16:9 15.6’’ widescreen version. The durable casing also stands up to dirt, dust, grease and spillages. VESA fixings mean it can be mounted on walls or poles as well as used on the table top.

Overall, the YUNO’s combination of advanced technology, ergonomics, flexibility and design make it an ideal value-for-money investment for any customer-facing business.