Summer is in full swing and with it, summer activities! Camping! Boating! Hikes! And most importantly...road trips! Throughout the summer months, there will be no shortage of travelers making a stop to your business to refuel and/or grab a quick bite to eat before returning to the road. Many of those travelers will be making quick decisions based on brand recognition but more importantly, the influences of your bathrooms and forecourts will weigh heavily towards a customer experience in generating more revenue towards food and retail purchases. In other words, the impact of cleanliness on customer experience can be felt directly in your bottom line.
For convenience store chains, maintaining a brand standard is essential for securing repeat business. Cleanliness plays a large part in shaping a brand, as well as customers’ purchasing decisions. A Harris Interactive poll found that 94% of more than 1,000 people who regularly visit a c-store would avoid a business in the future if they encountered dirty restrooms.
Forty-five percent of those respondents named gas stations as a specific place they would avoid. Also, keep in mind travelers this Summer rely not just on word of mouth but also using social media and travel apps towards planning towards their road and travel destinations. Seeing negative reviews and topics of uncleanliness will adversely impact business.
Consistent results can be accomplished by integrating a continuous improvement process involving four simple steps:
1. Define cleaning standard – What do you want the customer to experience when they visit each store? The standard of cleanliness should encompass the key areas of your c-store that will have the greatest impact on customers’ buying behavior. This includes restrooms, your forecourts, entrance ways and floors. C-stores that offer fresh food and specialty items should ensure these areas mentioned are kept clean. Additionally, cleanliness can influence employee satisfaction and reduce the occurrence of and costs associated with slip-and-fall accidents.
2. Define a cleaning plan – CAF Environmental Solutions is a company that provides c-store customers with training and education towards a comprehensive cleaning program. We have products that are environmentally friendly and tailored to target petroleum-based services and convenience store facilities. Our products and cleaning program reduces facility costs, increase employee retention and downtime, increase revenue all while increasing cleanliness for increased customer experience.
3. Implement Training - Training all employees at one time and in one place is not feasible when managing multiple stores across several cities or states. Turnover can add a further hindrance. At CAF we have several training program options: Online training, digital and collateral instruction, on-site management and team instruction and webinars. Our training sessions ensure employees who perform cleaning duties have the correct knowledge, tools and products to do a consistent job.
4. Monitoring Cleaning Performance – You want to continually improve your service to your customers, and without feedback from your managers and stores, you may not have the information needed to know if your cleaning program is working, or if adjustments need to be made. Use real-time data to make decisions.
Learn about the tools that can help you find out if your cleaning program is working the way you envisioned. Contact a CAF Outdoor Cleaning expert and discover how you can save more and make more with a cleaner forecourt.