5 Cleaning Concerns for High Traffic Shopping Centers

The holiday shopping season is now upon us. And while this annual occurrence won’t look quite like it has in previous years due to this year’s COVID-19 pandemic, business owners must still prepare for the ensuing boost in foot traffic. This increase in retail activity always poses numerous challenges for high traffic shopping centers. Not only must these businesses keep up with demand and meet each customer’s needs -- they must also maintain the beauty, integrity, and cleanliness of their facilities while the masses rifle through their wares. And as this year’s novel pandemic rages on, these cleaning concerns only grow in importance. Here are five current cleaning concerns for high traffic shopping centers and how to navigate them safely and properly.

1. Preventing Disease Transmission

Even in a normal year, the holiday shopping season coincides with the cold and flu season -- now, add COVID-19 into the mix. As such, the primary concern for all businesses during this time should be to protect the health and safety of all personnel and customers. Maintaining a clean work environment helps keep viruses and bacteria off of surfaces, but cleaning alone won’t eliminate these threats. Regular disinfection is required for these purposes. The location should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected at the beginning and end of each day. High-touch surfaces like doorknobs, shelves, countertops, point of sale (POS) systems, etc., should be disinfected often (in some cases between every use) to minimize the spread of infectious diseases. Additionally, hand sanitizers and wipes should be made available for all employees and customers throughout the facility.

2. Complying with Local and State Regulations

Various regulatory entities (such as OSHA and EPA) and governmental mandates require that businesses maintain a certain standard when it comes to commercial cleaning. These rules and regulations have only gotten stricter during this year’s pandemic. Failing to abide by these guidelines can result in fines and other penalties that can take a bite from your bottom line and reputation. As such, make sure your cleaning, disinfection, and health and safety efforts are compliant with all relevant agencies and laws (i.e. occupancy limits, mask enforcement, encouraging social distancing, use of EPA-registered disinfectants, etc.).

3. Minimizing Customer and Employee Interference

As important as maintaining a clean, safe, healthy environment is, doing so can undoubtedly get in the way of your operations, especially during the busiest times. Keeping your shopping center moving at a reasonable pace while constantly addressing cleanliness concerns is a difficult balance. In order to do so, you may need to hire additional seasonal help (i.e. in-house janitorial services) and/or establish a new cleaning schedule optimized for the ebbs and flows of the workday.

4. Keeping Commercial Cleaning Costs Low

Your business might see the most revenue it receives all year during the holiday shopping season. However, in order to maintain a decent profit margin, you have to continue to keep costs low at the same time. Of course, you’ll want to increase your cleaning efforts (and therefore cleaning costs) during this time to keep up with the high levels of traffic. The key is finding the right balance where you have enough resources at the ready to maintain a clean and safe workplace without exceeding budgets. Hiring the most reliable and efficient people is one important way to achieve this balance, as is working with a full-service facility management provider.

5. Weather Woes

Lastly, this time of year can bring plenty of rough weather with it in certain regions. High traffic shopping centers see plenty of snow, slush, and water tracked in from customers during this time. Not only is this mess an eyesore, but it’s also a safety hazard, increasing the risk of slips, trips, and falls. Part of your cleaning strategy, then, should include the utilization of commercial snow removal services. Hiring professionals to plow, shovel, and salt your lots and walkways will reduce the amount of moisture tracked in, increase safety, and make your facility more visible and accessible.

Clean Up Your Concerns with The Budd Group

Those in charge of high traffic shopping venues have plenty on their plate this year -- more than they normally do. For many of these businesses, receiving help from a full-service facility cleaning and management company is the best way to keep everyone safe, comply with relevant regulations, streamline operations, cut costs, and combat the effects of inclement weather. The Budd Group offers customized programs for commercial cleaning, maintenance, disinfection, landscaping, and all kinds of facility support. To learn more about our services and values, give us a call today at 800-221-8158!

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