How Retailers Keep Customers Employees Safe During COVID and Beyond
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, it’s important to not get complacent about safety, especially if you’re a retailer. We continue to have the responsibility of maintaining service without putting customers or employees in harm’s way. This responsibility won’t stop after the pandemic leaves us; it will change the way we interact with each other even when things are back to normal.
Here are some tips to help you stay on top of customer and employee safety:
1. Leverage Resources Like the CDC, NRF, and WHO
During health crises, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO), and other national and local authorities are excellent resources. They provide factual information you can’t necessarily count on elsewhere and keep you abreast of the latest guidelines, providing resources like workplace reminder messages on hygiene best practices, including guides and other printable downloads. Another resource for retailers is the NRF, which is providing updates on how the pandemic is affecting retailers and guidance you can trust.
2. Make It Easy for Everyone to Keep Their Hands Clean
Some of the most helpful tips to follow either can’t be done or go beyond opening hours. For an example, it’s hard to follow the guideline about frequent hand washing when you’re working at a check-out line in a store. Although they’re not as effective as handwashing, alcohol-based hand sanitizers help and should be made available at key points like entrances, exits, and points of payment. WebstaurantStore offers touchless options online and be sure to check your current supplier’s catalog for comparisons.
3. Put Clean Routines In Place in Your Store
An 8-page Workplace Ready Health Crisis FAQ guide published by the WHO outlines low-cost measures to prevent the spread of infection at the workplace, including:
- Disinfecting frequent touch objects: doorknobs, remote control and other devices, countertops, etc. Send simple email reminders to wipe up after each interaction, starting/ending shifts, opening/closing – as frequently as possible to encourage these habits.
- Provide more ventilation during any gathering that cannot be handled remotely by opening windows and turning on fans.
- Get creative—contests or awards for cleanliness achievements and milestones can encourage compliance and consistency.
4. Encourage Online Shopping
Despite all the safety measures, the best way to prevent the spread is by limiting or eliminating human interaction. Encourage your customers to use your eCommerce site by offering free shipping with no minimum threshold, creating online-only promotions, offering double or triple points…whatever will resonate with your customers.
If you don’t have an eCommerce channel yet, now is the time! Although many retailers are still reducing normal hours, increasing eCommerce sales means you’re “always open”. You’ll need to change to a business model that is more focused on shipping, but that is very doable.
You can quickly start up a basic site in minutes using Shopify using templates and themes they provide. Also consider using services like WJD Designs, which offers quick standups on premium digital content services like websites, graphics, and videos.
While many of these tips seem rather routine by now, it is easy to get busy, distracted, overwhelmed, and complacent. Someone once said, “Safety is the only cheap and effective insurance policy.” Be prepared by reaching out to experts with the tools and technology to help.
Contact ArcherPoint to discuss getting your business online or optimizing what you have in place to handle the increasing demand. Learn more about ArcherPoint’s Channel Sales Manager (CSM), which has everything you need to manage every aspect of your eCommerce business.
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