If you operate a business from a brick and mortar building — a local building as opposed to an online store — you have more to worry about than typical online businesses. As someone running a store or business with customers coming in, you are at risk for possible accidents, crimes like theft and vandalism, and damage or injury to your customers and their personal property. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to keep your customers safe while they’re in your brick and mortar business.
Crime – Ranging from vandalism to theft, there are a variety of crimes that can occur in your brick and mortar business. In order to keep your customers safe, you should take proper security measures. This includes installing a security alarm system and utilizing surveillance equipment, such as cameras and video recorders. Another great way to keep your customers safe from potential crimes is by having a security guard on the premises, who will keep an eye out for any suspicious activity.
Fire Hazard – All brick and mortar buildings, regardless of the type of business, are at risk of fire. You may sell certain items that are flammable, such as clothing items or merchandise containing flammable materials. Or, if a neighboring business has a high fire hazard, then that puts you and your customers at risk as well. Protect your customers from fire hazards by storing chemicals properly, keeping any combustible materials away from heat sources, and having fire extinguishers installed in your store. If you have more than one door to the outside, you might also need a special fire exit to get customers to safety.
Slips and Falls – A common accident that occurs in a brick and mortar building is a slip and fall. To reduce the risk of slips and falls and the potential bodily injuries that may be a result of such an accident, make sure to keep your store clean and organized. Don’t leave items in the aisles or walkways, keep cords out of tripping distance, and clean up spills immediately. Signs should be clearly displayed if the floors were recently mopped and are still wet.
Lighting – You may occasionally want low lighting to create ambiance, depending on the type of business you run, but this can also be hazardous. Improper lighting leads to a higher risk of accidents in the store because they were not able to see aisles clearly as well as increasing the risk of thefts and other crimes. A brightly lit building will reduce this risk and keep your customers safe.
Signage – Signage is always important, whether it is to place signs on automatic or push doors, or when the floors have recently been mopped and are still wet. Be sure to place proper signage throughout your store near the fire exit, in areas where customers should not be (such as where chemicals might be stores), in areas with flammable materials, and anything else you think your customers will find useful.
Security – Lastly, you should have proper security in your brick and mortar store. Keep a small amount of cash on site and in cash registers, and post security guards at the entrance and exits of your building. Have a manager walk around with employees when transferring cash to deter thieves from stealing during this time. Be sure armored trucks are out front for picking up cash. This protects customers by reducing the risk of theft when shoplifters and thieves know you have proper security.
There are many benefits to running a brick and mortar store, but you should also be concerned with the consequences. Keeping your customers safe should be a top priority and business insurance for those events you can’t prevent is strongly recommended.