The COVID-19 pandemic has been so hard on all businesses but retail has suffered particularly badly. All non-essential shops have been closed for a second time and even though some retailers can still make some money selling online, not all businesses are set up for that.
But even though things are difficult right now, there is light at the end of the tunnel and eventually, all of those retail stores will be able to open up again.
However, if you own a retail store, it’s important that you think about how things will be different in the future. Even though shops will be able to open again, coronavirus won’t disappear overnight, so retail stores need to change the way that they do things to make sure that their staff and customers are safe. These are the best ways to make sure that your retail business is COVID safe.
Send Notices To Employees Before Opening
Putting simple measures in place, like masks and shields over the tills is one of the easiest ways to keep everybody safe. But when the advice and the government guidelines are constantly changing as the situation evolves, it can be difficult to keep up.
If you want to make sure that your employees are following the right procedures at all times, it’s best to send them a notice beforehand explaining all of the new rules so they can familiarise themselves with them. This will prevent confusion when you open up and ensure that everybody is safe from day one.
A lot of businesses have already gone cashless since the pandemic started because reducing physical contact is very important. Passing cash back and forth increases the chances of spreading the virus and puts your staff and customers at risk. So, make sure to invest in some good quality credit card equipment and reduce cash payments as much as possible.
Make sure to put plenty of signs up on the doors and windows so customers know that you are only taking card payments and they are not disappointed when they get to the till and realise that they can’t pay in cash.
Rethink Your Layout
Making plenty of space between all of your customers so they can observe social distancing is important. Limiting the number of customers that you let into the shop at one time and using a one way system are effective ways to do that. But, you should also rethink the layout of the shop. Usually, you want the most popular items near the front so people can easily find them.
However, this can lead to a bottleneck, and if all of the most popular items are close to one another. It may be best to spread things out so you can avoid customers grouping up together.
Continue Working From Home
Obviously, you need staff to work in the shop and there is no way that they can work from home. However, a lot of the administrative staff that work behind the scenes can still work from home and you should continue the practice for as long as possible because it’s much safer.
If you follow these steps, you can make sure that your staff and customers are safe when you open your retail business again.