COVID-19 restrictions are easing throughout the world and businesses are on track to reopen. Unfortunately, this does not mean things will be business as usual. The entire economic landscape has been changed by the pandemic, and the customer experience is no different.
At least for the near future, we will not be returning to the way “we always did it.” Businesses such as restaurants, gyms, hair salons, and just about every type of business that has walk-in traffic, will have to make adjustments to adapt to the new expectations of their customers.
Businesses must be aware that consumers have not stopped shopping. They have just changed the way they go about it. With that in mind, companies need to be prepared to meet the new demands in order to deliver a better customer experience that is safe and alleviates customer concerns.
Customers want to know they are in a safe place, now more than ever. It is important for companies to publicly display their health and safety guidelines and policies. Doing so will show that your business cares about its customers’ and employees’ well-being. For example, Apple implemented strict social distancing guidelines within it’s stores and immediately shut down several stores temporarily when COVID-19 cases spiked.
Make health and safety part of the marketing strategy
Related to the strategy of creating confidence, companies can take it one step further by promoting health and safety as a part of their brand. Many airlines have demonstrated how they cleaned the seats and cabins of their aircrafts after every flight, as well as showcased how their air filtration system works. Hotels demonstrated their plans to create safe environments for their guests. However, try not to make promises you cannot live up to. Trust is impossible to gain if you violate your own protocols and promises.
Listen to the customer
Don’t immediately assume you know what the customer wants. They will be the ones that will tell you if you are doing a good job and they will share their concerns if you are not. Listen closely to your customer’s feedback and quickly react to areas that need improvement. This is important as a bad customer experience may still result in a lost customer even with the trust built with health and safety standards.