Business First Impressions: 3 Things You Need To Improve
What efforts are you putting in when it comes to wowing your customers? When you are dealing with customers face to face in a brick-and-mortar establishment, being able to use your premises as part of your customer service strategy can help you seal the deal and ensure that they are more than happy to do business with you. Whether this is welcoming clients to your office space or beauty salon or you want to bring customers through the doors at your retail outlet, making a good first impression using your surroundings can be an effective strategy.
At a minimum, you must ensure your flooring is safe and clean. All flooring should be level, and if there are any slopes or steps, these should be clearly marked and adorned with handrails if necessary. The type of flooring you choose also needs to be in keeping with your brand identity and the kind of clientele you want to attract.
For example, suppose you are opening a retail store, and it’s going to be under a lot of pressure from people walking on it, pushchairs, carts, wheelchairs, etc; choosing concrete flooring can give you an eye-catching, durable option over the carpet, which can get dirty and messy quickly, meaning you will simply need concrete polishing to revive your flooring over replacing the carpet. Still, an office environment or meeting room, for example, would benefit from carpeting as it provides extra warmth underfoot and additional soundproofing and can be used as another design element to pull the decor together.
The type of lighting you use within your establishment will form part of the vibe and feel and can both entice and relax people. For example, harsh, bright lighting can impact people’s ability to work and create a stark and unwelcoming shopping environment. While bright lighting is typically used in large retail stores and supermarkets, if you have an office or smaller clothing store, for example, you might want to look at softer, warm white lighting instead.
Using recessed lighting, spotlights, lamps, backlight cabinets, and desk areas, along with natural light flooding the space, will be more enticing to the eye than harsher lights. So look at your setup, what type of ambiance you are looking for that works well with your premises, and ensure your lighting meets these standards.
Never underestimate the importance of the placement of your equipment, shelving, etc, in relation to how people navigate the space. Let’s take a store. The last thing you want to do is make your entrance and exit hard to get into because you have too much going on.
Keep the doorways clear and use this area to create welcoming features so that when people enter, they can instantly see where to go and what is on offer instead of falling over stock being pushed on them to buy. The same goes for the route from the till point to the door if this is separate. It needs to flow out of the store and be easy to navigate.
In an office, though, this would be the placement of your reception area in relation to the desk setup. Having too much in view of the clients might be overwhelming for everyone, and exposing clients to the hubbub of your office life might detract from what you are trying to create. Keep the pathways from reception areas to meeting rooms or private offices clear, avoid walking people through the middle of the workplace, and make it as appealing as possible.