Restroom Cleanliness-A Key to Excellent Retail Customer Service
It may seem that customer restrooms are a minor afterthought in the retail business. Certainly, a small cubby hole must be provided somewhere in the dark recesses of a shop, but customers don’t really notice any flaws in this minor part of retail customer service, right?
Actually customers are very appreciative and frankly relieved when they can use restroom facilities that are clean and pleasant to visit. There is probably nothing that is more of a turn off to a customer than dirty, dingy restroom facilities, because like it or not this area is a reflection of the rest of the store. Especially in restaurants or other stores that offer food such as convenience stores (hint, hint), party stores or coffee shops, restroom facilities that make customers feel comfortable in their surroundings can add to an overall positive shopping experience. This of course, translates into repeat business and increased sales.
So what can businesses do to provide an overall excellent customer experience even in the bathroom? Just a few extra touches can go a long way to add convenience for the customer. Don’t skimp on the amount of room available for each stall. Nothing is more difficult in the wintertime than to try to squeeze through a narrow door with a heavy winter coat, a purse and shopping bags. Single toilet restrooms can offer a handy chair for people to lay down any items they have rather than trying to drape their coat, purse straps, etc. over the door handle.
An impression of cleanliness is probably the single most important factor in restroom facilities. Regular basic maintenance checks are a must to make sure necessities such as toilet paper, paper towels and soap are well-stocked. Floors must be swept and mopped, the garbage changed and spills must be promptly cleaned up.
Retailers should ensure the door locks are in good working order and make sure the plumbing is working properly and provides both hot and cold water. Customers also appreciate nice touches like good lighting, attractive walls and fixtures, pleasant air freshener and small perks like disposable toilet seat covers, antibacterial gel and skin moisturizer.
Providing first-rate restroom facilities shows customers that their patronage is valuable and appreciated. Savvy retailers know that a small, but thoughtful investment help maximize traffic in their store.