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When a retail shopper enters a shop and sees sticky floors, dirty surfaces, and dusty corners, it makes them want to turn around and run for the car park. Nothing quite turns off customers as much as filth, and that is nothing new, it is human nature. That’s why you should do everything in your power to provide your customers with a clean and tidy shop to shop in.

Cleanliness is the common factor among all top-rated grocery shops and supermarkets. People want a nice environment to shop in where they don’t have to worry about getting germs or dirt on their hands or when they are in the shop.

Retail Shop Cleanliness: More than the Illusion of Clean

When a shop can convince its customers that it’s genuinely clean, that’s a real victory for them. Most customers feel sceptical about shop cleanliness, especially behind the scenes where customers aren’t allowed. They have seen hidden-camera TV shows that reveal the dirty secrets of restaurants, retail shops, and supermarkets. However, certain qualities convince a customer that a shop is truly clean, and we will be sharing the biggest indicators of cleanliness from a consumer’s point of view.

Qualities that Indicate a Shop Is Clean

·         Neat and Clean Footpaths

Before they even enter a shop, customers want to see clean footpaths and steps. Due to this reason, many grocery shops frequently power-wash their footpaths.

·         A Pristine Entryway

The entrance to the shop should be squeaky clean, from the floor mats to the windows. Consumers are particularly irked by debris like cigarette butts, gum, and mysterious stains, which can indicate a lack of frequent cleaning.

·         Sanitiser and Bins

Consumers want to see clear indications that the company cares about cleanliness, like dust bins, recycling bins, hand sanitisers, and hand wipes. This is particularly true of shops that offer shopping trolleys and baskets, which can hold germs.

·         Sparkling Floors

When a floor is freshly polished and gleaming, the customer is given the immediate impression of a clean environment. In the same way, a scuffed and dirty floor makes them wonder what is grimy throughout the shop.

·         Hygienic Toilets

The toilets must be bright, fresh-smelling, and fully stocked with toilet paper and paper towels. One study found that 86% of restaurant customers equate a dirty toilet with a dirty kitchen, and 75% would never return to a place with a bathroom that isn’t clean.

·         No Spills

Customers judge a company harshly if they fail to address spills quickly, ideally within minutes. For this reason, shops should have their staff members constantly monitor their entire retail floor for spills and stains.

Retail Shop Cleanliness and Liability Laws

Cleanliness isn’t just about keeping consumers happy; it’s also about keeping them safe. If a customer is injured, and they can prove the owner was negligent in maintaining a safe environment, they could win a costly settlement against the shop. All business owners are required to keep their property free of hazards that could pose a serious risk to public health and safety. Slip-and-fall accidents are the number cause of emergency department visits and a leading cause of workers’ compensation claims.

The primary contributor to retail shop slip-and-fall injuries is dirty, loose, and worn flooring. This includes tattered carpeting, broken vinyl, and laminate materials, uneven wood planks, cracked concrete, and all types of flooring with rough patches and loose debris. Liquid spills, litter, and stacks of unsorted merchandise also contribute to many retail shop injuries.

Keeping a Squeaky Clean Reputation

A dirty shop can quickly become a PR nightmare for any shop. Almost everyone has a mobile phone in their hands at all times, and they can quickly snap a photo of a dirty floor or restroom and share it with thousands of people on Instagram, Yelp, Google Reviews, and more. One study found that the top 5 cleanliness factors that cause people to stop going to a shop forever are:

  1. General bad odour – 78%
  2. Dirty restrooms – 66%
  3. Dirty and dusty surfaces – 65%
  4. Poor entryway cleanliness – 60%
  5. Broken and dirty dressing rooms – 56%

To keep any retail environment tidy enough to impress customers, avoid bad PR, and ward off potential lawsuits, shop owners can take some preventive steps. Below is a helpful checklist. Some of these tasks must be done daily, or even hourly, and others involve a deeper and more thorough cleaning regularly.

A Checklist of Cleaning Tasks for Retailers

·         Create Routine Cleaning Schedules

Weekly cleaning simply isn’t going to be enough. Employees should check entryways, walkways, and restrooms hourly, and shop cleaning should take place daily.

·         Schedule Deep Cleaning

In addition to regular daily maintenance, the entire shop should be deep-cleaned consistently. This includes high ceiling areas, floors and carpets, windows, displays, and everything else in both public and employee-only spaces.

·         Check Air and Surface Quality

Perform mould tests, and have the ductwork and HVAC system cleaned. Ensure that the surfaces customers touch are not just clean but hygienic, meaning they are being cleaned thoroughly enough to eliminate infectious bacteria and viruses.

·         Arrange Power Washing

Certain areas need to be power washed regularly to keep them clean, and these include car parks, footpaths, entrance building, exterior siding, and railings. You can make arrangements for a cleaning company to frequently power wash these areas.

·         Deep Clean the Car Park

At least once a year, schedule a thorough parking lot cleaning to remove embedded debris, oil, stains, tire marks, and all the other grime that builds up around your customer’s cars.

·         Remove Graffiti Promptly

Retail customers dislike seeing graffiti on the side of your shop walls, so make sure that you have a cleaner on call who can tackle graffiti as soon as it happens.

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