Study: Dirty Store Repels Shoppers

Some 99% of U.S. adults say poor cleanliness negatively impacts their perception of a retail store.

A recent Cintas Corp. telephone survey conducted by Harris Interactive among more than 1,000 U.S. adults ages 18 and older revealed what experiences negatively impact a customer’s perception of a retail store.

Ninety-nine percent of U.S. adults reported that any poor cleanliness issue would negatively affect their perception. More specifically, dirty restrooms and unpleasant odor are top annoyances over poor customer service.

“The retail industry is exceptionally competitive, so retailers must provide a pleasant shopping experience to attract and maintain loyal shoppers,” said Mike Thompson, senior vice president, Cintas Facility Services. “This research affirms that maintaining a clean retail environment can significantly impact the success of a retail operation.”

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When asked what experiences with poor cleanliness would negatively impact their perception of a retail store, U.S. adults reported the following:

— Unclean restrooms, 95%

— Unpleasant odor, 92%

— Poor customer service, 90%

— Dirty floors, 86%

— Dirty shopping carts, 84%

— Poor staff appearance, 83%

— Spills or stains, 81%

— Wet floors with no signage, 76%

— Dusty surfaces, 74%

— Dirty glass and windows, 68%

“If shoppers are unsatisfied with the cleanliness of a retail store, they will take their business elsewhere,” added Dave Mesko, senior director of marketing, Cintas. “Partnering with Cintas for a restroom cleaning and maintenance program enables retailers to improve store cleanliness and focus on boosting customer loyalty and profits.”

This survey was conducted by phone within the U.S. by Harris Interactive on behalf of Cintas from Dec. 17-20, 2010 among 1,004 adults ages 18 and older. Results are weighted to reflect the U.S. adult population.

Cintas offers a retail facility services program. Whether a retailer needs restocking services, floor mat services, cleaning chemicals, mops or regular deep cleaning, Cintas can customize a program to meet its customers’ needs.