Social distancing efforts have led to new ways of doing business during the coronavirus pandemic. Curbside pickup is a great way to keep customers safe while collecting their orders. However, for many this is a totally new way of doing business and there may be many things owners have not considered.
Here are 5 things all business owners should know to keep business flowing and everyone safe and sound.
You’re Obligated to Protect Workers & Patrons
Curbside pickup is a great option for customers during the pandemic, but it also comes with risks. Business owners have an obligation to protect their workers and patrons, but doing so needn’t be costly or complex.
Check for employee trip, slip, and fall hazards around the pickup area. Ensure workers wear masks and wash their hands frequently. Provide ample space for parking while customers are waiting for their orders and ensure that the flow of traffic is not obstructed.
You Need to Minimize Risk
Many businesses do not have pickup windows, but that doesn’t mean they can’t provide curbside pickup. A safe, well-lit designated parking spot or pull-off area can also fulfill this need. Post signs to direct patrons to the proper spot.
Ensure your employees do not need to cross a busy laneway or stand in traffic while delivering goods. Provide brightly colored vests for high visibility and name tags to prove they are employees.
You Should Simplify the Process
Your customer wants to pick up what they ordered quickly and without a fuss. Food pickups are relatively straightforward as hot foods can be packed in one bag and cold items in another. It’s just a matter of handing them over.
However, curbside pickups also involve many other items and some of them are large or expensive. In this case, it is a good idea to coordinate a pick up with a text or dedicated telephone number.
When the customer arrives they can park in a designated area and let the business know they’re ready. The employee, or employees, can bring the item to their vehicle and can load it without contact with the customer after asking for identification.
You Should Encourage Prepayment
Fortunately, most people have grown accustomed to paying for goods beforehand when they place an online order. It reduces contact and keeps everyone safe.
However, some patrons may be reluctant. Gently encourage them to pay upfront with a credit or debit card as it speeds the process and the employee needn’t handle cash or a machine.
You Must Practice In-Store Protocols
Some businesses don’t have the luxury of a dedicated space for outdoor pickups. As a result, guests need to enter their store to get their goods.
In this case, the business will need to limit the number of guests allowed on the premises at one time, insist on masks, and offer hand sanitizer. While customers are indoors they will also need to maintain effective social distancing.
Curbside pickup offers an attractive and safe option to both businesses and customers and it will probably stick around long after this is all over. Do what you can today to ensure that your customers and employees remain safe.