The long hours and late nights of working in the retail business can be as tough on employees as they are on you. As a business owner, you have a big responsibility to not only protect your business, but to also do so in such a way that makes your customers and employees feel safe, too.
Here are a few ways you can make your team and your treasured customers feel like your store is a safe haven:
Install a New Security System
The security industry is constantly evolving as technology advancements are made, so if your store’s security system is more than 10 years old, now is a great time to invest in the latest technology. A state-of-the-art security system shows both your employees and your customers that security is among your top priorities. The mere presence of it can help deter crime.
When shopping for a new system, be sure to invest in one that comes with multiple cameras that can be installed throughout your store as well as outside near the entry and by the back door. If you have large display windows, make sure they are fully covered in the range of a camera as well. This could help to deter vandalism.
It is well worth investing in a high-definition Lorex camera so your security footage will be crisp and clear. Some of these cameras will even record Color Night Vision for an extra layer of detail in low light situations. Fortify the security presence outside your store with the addition of a few thermal security cameras, which use thermal imaging technology to capture images of things based on the heat that they radiate. This is a great extra layer of protection to prevent criminals lurking in the shadows or shrubbery from being hidden.
Keep Up with PCI Compliance
When customers pay with their credit and debit cards, they are fully trusting that you will respect their privacy and personal security enough to protect their identity and not mishandle their payment information. In order to prevent payment information from falling into the wrong hands, whether that be of an outside criminal or a dishonest store associate, it is crucial to staunchly adhere to all of the latest Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) guidelines. The PCI DSS was developed to protect companies that process, store and transmit credit card payment information in the best interest of both the company and customers.
As a business owner, it is well worth your time and efforts to jump through whatever hoops are necessary to maintain compliance with these standards. Once deemed PCI compliant, be sure to clearly post this in the payment area of your shop so that every customer can feel a little safer as they hand over that little plastic card to pay for their purchases.
Know Your Audience & Cater to Their Needs
The little details in your store can make or break your business, which is why it is key to take the time to really get to know your target market and understand their needs. For instance, if your store caters to new parents, like a maternity store or a baby and kids retail shop, include a small play area where little ones can play safely while their parents peruse your shop. In this type of market, it also pays to have a neat and tidy bathroom accessible for customers to use.
If you own a clothing store, include a few basic items in the fitting room for customers to try on with their selected merchandise. For instance, in a women’s dress shop, have a pair of neutral high heels in a popular size and a strapless bandeau bra to pair with special occasion dresses to get an accurate look. In a men’s suit shop, you might include a white dress shirt in each fitting room and a pair of wingtips or loafers.
If you own a shop that sells personal care items like bath products and skincare, offer simple refreshments like bottled water and hot tea to help customers relax and unwind as they explore your store.
By thinking ahead about your customers’ needs and wants, you are showing your customers that you fully value their patronage and this can help keep them returning for future purchases.