7 simple ideas to improve your reception area

Written by Pieter-Jan - Written: November 18, 2022


7 seconds…

According to science, that’s the amount of time people need to form a first impression. As a business that means you don’t have much time to impress your visitors. These ideas for your reception area will help you to make the most of those 7 seconds.

A potential customer is visiting your company for the first time. When they enter your reception area, they look around for a moment to take in the surroundings. Then they go to the front desk, where a receptionist is helping out other guests. 7 seconds have passed.

Impossible to leave a professional, friendly, and modern impression in this short period of time? No, it is not. These small, simple changes to your reception area will bring you a long way.

How do you ensure that your reception area is functional and modern, and makes a great impression on your visitors?

Continue reading to learn more or select a specific tip:

  1. Tidy up
  2. Add some green
  3. Use a visitor management system
  4. Invest in comfortable furniture
  5. Offer a drink
  6. Away with magazines, use coffee table books instead
  7. Show your brand

What is a reception area?

Before we dive into these 7 ways to make your reception area a cool space, it’s important to know exactly which space(s) we’re talking about.

A reception area is the part of your office space used to greet visitors, as well as provide them with a seating area where they can wait for their host.

The size of this space is usually in proportion to the size of the company. The costs you are willing to invest to furnish your reception area will also depend on this.

Essential components of a reception area are:

  • A reception desk
  • Comfortable chairs for the receptionist(s)
  • Comfortable seating for guests
  • A table for coffee table books or where visitors can put their belongings while waiting

Functional reception area

1. Tidy up

Less is more: this golden rule also applies to your reception area. We cannot emphasize enough that your reception area is your company’s business card. A first glance provides your visitor with a wealth of information.

Do you have a small reception area crammed with furniture and unnecessary decorations, or is it a nice, neat space, functionally furnished, where you make the best possible use of the available space and daylight?

It goes without saying that your reception area needs to be clean and tidy. Research has shown that untidy spaces can lead to depression and fatigue and that people in a messy environment may have trouble concentrating.

The message is clear: cleaning up your counter, dusting coffee tables, and positioning all the pillows in a neat way take you only a few minutes, but it can make a substantial difference.

Clean modern reception area

2. Add some green

Science has proven: houseplants make you feel better. A study by NASA has shown that plants remove 87 percent of toxins from the air in 24 hours by converting carbon dioxide into oxygen.

But there’s more. Plants brighten up your reception area while bringing peace of mind. And that’s exactly what you want: for your visitors to be relaxed.

Plants green reception area receptionist calling

3. Use a visitor management system

Once you have created the ideal setting, it is time to look further into the visitor experience. A perfect way to make a professional and modern impression on your visitors is by using a visitor management system.

Filling out a paper logbook may seem like a small effort for your guests, but in times of automation and data privacy, you no longer make a good impression with such an outdated system. With a digital solution for visitor registration, you will exceed your guests’ expectations.

All they have to do is sign in on a tablet, and a message is immediately sent to their host. Additional benefits include eliminating queues at your front desk. Meanwhile, your receptionist can focus on tasks that really matter: providing a great welcome experience for visitors.

Vizito offers a comprehensive visitor management system that makes your reception smarter. A smart visitor management system is the best way to ensure security while impressing your visitors.

To find out how a visitor management system can help you improve your reception, you can try out Vizito during a 14 day trial. Chat with us or book a demo to discover all benefits.

4. Invest in comfortable furniture

If your visitors have to wait for their host in the reception area, you might as well make their wait pleasant. A cozy reception area contributes to happy and relaxed guests.

Crucial here is good furniture. Don’t just opt for an attractive look, but also mind comfort. You don’t want your visitors to leave your company with back pains and headaches. Paying attention to ergonomics shows that your company is committed to health and safety.

Therefore, it’s important to test the furniture yourself before use: can you sit comfortably in it for 30 minutes without sinking too deep into the cushions?

Some more tips:

  • Light. Make the best use of natural light. If there is none, find a good balance of white and yellow lamps to mimic natural light.
  • Music. There’s nothing like music to get in a good mood, and that goes for your reception area, too. Music can reduce stress and pain and improve cognitive and motor skills, but most importantly, music creates a pleasant atmosphere. Moreover, music affects how we experience time. So if you are worried because your guests have to wait for a while, music might just be the solution.

comfortable furniture reception area

5. Offer a drink

What gives you a warmer feeling than a cup of coffee? It’s always nice to offer your visitors a beverage and a snack. It puts them at ease and shows that your company cares about them.

If you have a large company with many visitors, serving all of them isn’t always possible. The perfect solution is a self-service bar, where visitors can take their own cup of coffee or tea, a snack, or a piece of fruit while waiting.

Read more

When it comes to making a good impression on visitors, a nice reception area will bring you a long way. But your receptionist has a key role, too. Learn the essential skills a receptionist needs to make your company shine.

6. Away with magazines, use coffee table books instead

If you still have magazines laying around in your reception area, now is the time to throw them away. Thumbed-down, dog-eared magazines don’t just look sad and untidy, they give your guests a message you don’t want to do much effort for them.

Instead of newspapers and magazines, invest in some nice coffee table books. They look fancier, are more sustainable, more interesting and won’t wear out in a few weeks.

Coffee table books also give you an opportunity to convey a certain message, or they may reflect the philosophy behind your business. Make smart use of this by choosing books that match your brand.

7. Show your brand

Your reception area is your company’s business card, and you may take that very literally. Your reception area should exude your organization’s identity and brand. If it doesn’t, it may confuse your visitors.

Imagine, for example, you just had a meeting at a company where the house colors are red and white. You would experience discomfort if the reception desk in that same company is painted green. Another example is a paper visitor log at the front desk of a company that claims to be innovative.

To avoid this, it’s important to create visual cues that communicate your brand and show your identity. Some ways to do this:

With these tips, you’re off for a good start. You now have an idea of what the important features are of a reception area. If you follow our tips, you are guaranteed to make a professional, pleasant first impression on all your guests. Which ideas will you get started with?

To get a feel of how a modern visitor management system can help your business grow, try out Vizito during a 14-day trial. Chat with us or book a demo to discuss how Vizito can help you improve your reception.

Got more questions? These are the 7 most common questions about digital visitor management – and our answers.

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