Marzaan Smith, Account Executive at The Blue Room, shares her insights into how you can go the extra mile in your business to encourage your customers to return.

2020 has changed the outlook and operations of many industries across the globe. All over companies had to adapt according to new health and safety regulations. However, they have also seen opportunity in circumstances where they can stand out from the crowd. For the retail sector customer service has always been a vital factor to keep businesses thriving, and now this is yet another factor that has been changed in many ways – and companies need to take note to ensure they still get their piece of the pie.

As we all know, the COVID-19 pandemic has magnified our attention to our daily personal hygiene which in turn made us look at the hygiene of the places we visit. Stores have therefore needed to adapt to ensure customers feel safe when visiting and ensure they return for business again.

According to Cape Union Mark chairman, Phillip Krawitz, “Nothing will ever be the same again. Customers will come in and expect social distancing to be maintained, sanitisation will be extremely important, excellent service will dominate the entire theme, and care for our customers in terms of their safety will be a determining factor in terms of what stores will be visited.”

Taking this statement into consideration, we need to look at a few simple changes stores can make to ensure they not only adhere to government COVID-19 regulations, but that the customers appreciate the extra mile and thought the store has put in, to make customers feel safe.

Create a safe space for customers

Stores need to adapt and see to it that enough attention is given to customers while managing the register and floor. This can be done by:

  1. Ensuring there is no long lines and a limit on the amount of people in store to adhere to social distancing rules.
  2. Ensuring customers can check out with the least amount of physical contact possible. Potentially, this means some stores will need to invest in new equipment, like tap and go scanners.
  3. Ensure staff is educated and up to date with COVID-19 regulations and safety measurements as stated by the World Health Organisation and government.

Make customers feel their needs are being considered

Create different shopping options, such as:

  1. Click and Collect or curb side pickup services
  2. Scheduling appointments after hour
  3. Delivery service
  4. Selling on digital social platforms

Personalise your customers’ experience

  1. Make customers feel wanted in-store by ensuring friendly face-to-face service. Experiences like this can’t be transferred digitally, so use this to your advantage.
  2. Ensure customers see your appreciation for supporting your business. Something simple like a thank you note in a package that has been delivered to your doorstep can go a long way.

Ensure your staff is continuously well-trained

  1. They can attend Customer Service Training in accordance with COVID-19 regulations. Topics like general good customer service is something that will never go out of style.
  2. Mix the above with some general hygiene and social distancing etiquette, and your staff will be well on their way to keep your store and brand ready for any challenges heading your way.

The Blue Room offers a wide range of retail and corporate marketing solutions, as well as communication that will elevate your brand. Interested in what we can do for you? Click here to view our full list of retail and communications services.

To find out more – and to give your business the edge – call us on 021 553 0315 / email

Written by Marzaan Smith: Account Executive, The Blue Room