While at first glance your store may appear clean, it may not be what your customers see. No matter the business, customers want to buy their products from a clean store. An unclean store goes beyond the physical appearance, it is the small things that matter too; such as the smell, under-stocked shelves, or poor staff appearance. The reality is: an unclean store will drive business away and decrease sales.
Turns Away Customers
A dirty store effects your business a lot more than what you think. 99% of consumers say they turn away from unclean stores and take their business elsewhere. First impression is everything. The look of your store from the outside matters just as much as how it looks on the inside. Customers will turn away if the outside looks dirty and there’s trash everywhere. The issues that are top concerns for customers are :
Spills and stains
Hold your employees and yourself to higher standards. Keep a handbook listing all the things that need to be done around the store and ENFORCE them. Every morning and every night, tasks should be completed. Through out the day, there should be routine checks to make sure both the outside and inside are clean.
Bad Position with Neighborhood
Not only do your customers not like a dirty store, but the neighborhood around you will likely be unhappy with it as well. People unfamiliar with the area who are just traveling through and see a dirty convenience store will assume the rest of the neighborhood, other businesses, will look the same way. The issue goes beyond just your store, it will effect the other businesses and people of the community around you. The community will assume if you can not even care about your own business, it is clear you do not care about them. As a result, you can get angry locals who could call and complain about your store and put you out of business. Your business is more than just a convenience store, it is a representation of that neighborhood as well.
Solution: Keep your store clean from the outside as well. Have your employees walk around outside the store periodically throughout the day to pick up trash, clean off windows, and make sure the overall appearance of the store is inviting. Also, build a relationship with the neighborhood. Talk to your customers that you notice are regulars and ask what you can do to make your business better for the neighborhood.
There are a number of things that can drive your sales down and how you run your business is one of them. When you have a messy unclean store, you are inviting your customers to treat your store the same way. Customers will see messy shelves and throw products back on the shelves as they saw them. Over time products will become damaged and placed randomly throughout the store. Be aware of the products you are putting on the shelves as well. Customers do not want to buy products if they appear damaged. No one wants to see empty or messy shelves. How you present your products is a big part of business and if the shelves are messy and cluttered, it can result in bad sales.
Damaged products hurt your business bottom line. Check your packages upon arrival after transit and make sure they are all intact. Do not put out products such as crackers, chips, or other packaged goods if you know that they have been smashed during transit or look like they have been opened. Have your employee who is on the floor periodically go around and check shelves to make sure they are neat and in order. Your shelves should always be more than half way stocked. This way, during rush hours, everything is stocked up and you do not have to worry about customers complaining that shelves are empty.
In this competitive industry with convenience stores on every corner you can not afford to lose customers so easily. It is not enough to just be a “good” convenience store. Go beyond your customers’ expectations and become their go to convenience store.
Consider investing in the best cleaning products to make keeping your store clean easier!