If you run your own small business, you will have been faced with a super challenging time in this past year. The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown us all into turmoil, on a personal, financial, physical and mental scale. Every individual has had to make changes, and with those changes have come risks. Whether you have had to work from home, home-school your children, apply for a loan or look for a new job, coronavirus has thrown curveballs at every single one of us.
Business owners are no exception. If you run a physical business in which customers visit you directly, you will likely have had to close up shop for a few months this year. This unprecedented crisis has forced many businesses into administration, and even those who have made it through the storm have come off worse. But now that doors are beginning to re-open, is your business prepared for the new world?
Here are some key tips to adapting your store layout for COVID-19 safety.
1. Clear Signage.
From a customer point of view, the key factor is feeling safe when you are out. Having spent months in quarantine, so many people will feel scared to brave the unknown. If they are met with a seemingly disorganized, unsafe space, they are likely to leave quickly, if they even come in at all.
That means that if you are a store owner or manager, you are responsible for giving an air of calm, safety and organizational structure. Signage is one easy way to do this. For example, you should consider imposing a one-way system around your store, to prevent customers from crossing paths. Clearly indicating how to navigate this system with signs and stickers is essential.
2. Fewer Products, More Space
If your store is usually well-stocked and highly packed with products, you may want to consider displaying fewer items with more space to walk. Even if you don’t want to reduce the number of products on sale, perhaps lay out a selection of your bestsellers, and direct customers to your website for the full range. Usually, customers will be understanding of this change, and will be appreciative of your consideration for their safety.
3. Consult A Professional
Guaranteeing the safety of others is never truly possible, but you can come close. Many businesses are frightened of their store being a hub for transmission. If you are one of those business owners, consider contacting a professional who can consult your space and help you figure out a safe way to display your products. There are Retail Store Design Consultants Helping Retailers with Store Layout During And After COVID-19, who can optimize your layout for safety, aesthetic, and sales. This will help you to rest assured that your customers will be as safe as possible while visiting your business, helping you succeed and flourish, even during these unprecedented times.