Big-box retailers have evolved the shopping experience by offering curbside pickup and delivery, and consumers have responded positively to the option of ordering online. In fact, 23% of consumers in 2018 prefer to order their household products online and pick them up at the store.
As more and more retailers adapt to the trend of curbside pickup, parking lot and landscaping maintenance become more important than ever due to the consumer’s brand perception beginning and ending at the exterior of the building. Here are a few maintenance tips that facility managers should consider to keep a positive brand perception of their facilities:
1. Set the stage
63% of shoppers who participate in curbside pickup want a designated and visible spot for pick-up destinations. Consumers that are too busy to do their shopping in-store don’t want to roam the parking lot looking for their pick-up area. Facility managers should keep the parking lots in order by re-striping pick-up areas in prominent colors, so it is easily identifiable. Keeping surrounding trees and shrubs trimmed to a minimum can clear the view to the signage throughout the parking lot.
2. Don’t forget about the landscape
Offering a pick-up option at your location can increase the traffic at your store. With online and traditional shoppers traveling to and from the store, consumers are coming and going at all hours of the day. The plants, shrubs and turf that add to curb appeal can quickly become unappealing without consistent attention. Replace mulch and tend to turf if tire damage or harsh temperatures harmed the facilities’ landscaping. Recurring and planned lawn maintenance can also add to the impression of a facility.
3. Stay consistent
Oftentimes, exterior maintenance is put on the back-burner because customers are rushing from their parking lots to the inside of their facility, but when a customer is sitting in your lot waiting for pick-up, dirty windows, sidewalks and lots leave a lasting impression. If the area surrounding a facility is unappealing and misaligned with the online experience, it could affect the consumer’s brand perception without them stepping foot into the store. 75% of consumers expect a consistent experience wherever they interact with a brand. Facility managers should consider consistent maintenance like recurring window washing and power washing to maintain the exterior of their facilities.
4. Keep a pristine lot
Cracked and uneven parking lots become a bigger menace when curbside pickup is an option. Because the pick-up area is in a single location, there is a common route for all consumers who order online. If a pothole is in the pick-up area’s common route, a majority of online shoppers will encounter the dip and experience frustration. To avoid a negative brand image, facility executives should proactively tend to their parking lot and promptly fill cracks and potholes when they first form.
How Can I Keep My Facilities Maintained Throughout the Year?
Take charge of building integrity, performance, brand reputation and budget by using proactive maintenance. Scheduling recurring services can lead to enhanced curb appeal that encourages patronage to those who are simply sitting curbside.