By Submitted Article on May 28, 2020.
Submitted by the Better
The coronavirus pandemic has made every Canadian >rethink all facets of everyday life and has created serious challenges for businesses. However, there’s hope ahead. Provinces are allowing a widening number of businesses to open, so new revenue possibilities are becoming available. Businesses have a fresh opportunity to encourage new relationships and build trust.
Like many other provinces, Alberta is allowing some businesses to resume serving customers, but at a reduced capacity. Offering curbside pickup might be an option to increase sales while only a limited number of people are allowed inside your facility. Follow these curbside pickup best practices to set yourself up for success.
Provide Experiences and Great Customer Service
Curbside pickup is an opportunity to stand out, serve your community and build relationships. Consumers have been stuck at home for weeks. They’re eager for personal connections and >human interaction. When you (safely) provide what they’re looking for, >you encourage customer loyalty and repeat visits.
Make every aspect of the experience about your customers. Prioritize a hassle-free ordering experience and a fast handoff. Use large visual aids that show consumers where they should park for curbside pickup and what to do next. As soon as they enter your parking lot, they should be able to see you were expecting them and you’re glad they came. Be transparent to prevent consumer frustration.
Think about employees, too. If they’re waiting outside to deliver goods, set up protection from sun or inclement weather. They’ll be better able to provide a cheerful handoff if they’re comfortable and supported.
Create A Little Ambiance >
Think outside the box to stand out from other local businesses offering curbside pickup. Use lighting creatively in your parking lot to create a welcoming nighttime pickup. Consider using low-power local radio communication and encouraging customers to tune in while they’re on your lot. Reduce perceived wait time when you use it to advertise specials, explain what you’re doing to protect consumer health and play music that enhances their experience.
Enforce Strict Health and Hygiene Policies
Develop an official policy for your staff and use training to explicitly communicate your expectations. Find ways to regularly verify everyone is doing their best. We offer hygiene tips in our >BBB Toolkit, >if you haven’t already developed them for your organization. Some businesses allow outside delivery services to pick up items and take them elsewhere. Those workers don’t have the same hygiene policies yours do, so make sure your staff has a plan for disinfecting after each interaction with them.
Curbside Pickup Process Training
Create procedures for each stage of the process and train staff on those procedures. If your business takes phone orders, clarify who is responsible for answering the phone and what information they need to gather. Instead of just handing that person a blank notepad, create a form or document with fields for all the necessary data. If you take orders over the phone, encourage customers to make payment when they call. That minimizes handling of items like cards, pens and receipts. If your online ordering system is new, train employees on receiving, fulfilling and accepting payment for that type of order.
For more tips on staying safe, avoiding scams and growing your business despite COVID-19, visit bbb.org.