Despite a slight loosening of lockdown restrictions over the past week and in the future pipeline, the general consensus is that this virus is going to be here for many more months to come. In addition, the wariness of the public is likely to remain for much longer than the virus itself.
So it’s no surprise that the head of Britain’s third largest supermarket is making plans for long term social distancing – in the form of a virtual queuing system.
Not only does this help the business become Covid-19 secure, but it also addresses the safety concerns of their shoppers directly with a visible and simple solution.
The system that Asda is trialling will enable customers to log in to the queue remotely – Enabling them to wait safely in their cars instead of a long queue of people before being able to enter the store.
It is becoming increasingly apparent that this virus isn’t going to just disappear, and people need to be confident that stores are doing everything they can to keep them safe whilst shopping, or they may well choose to shop elsewhere. This is why remote queuing is such a perfect solution – Keeping consumers as safe as possible in an easy, straightforward way.
Investing in effective social-distancing measures is paramount, not only for the grocery stores that are already open, but for other retail outlets anticipating reopening after lockdown restrictions are lifted further. Assuming that social-distancing will be around for a while, putting remote queuing systems in place now will help encourage shoppers to choose their store to shop in, feeling assured that their safety is being cared for.
Asda have shared statistics showing that two-thirds of customers were still concerned about safety in supermarkets. And whilst this figure may diminish slightly with each restriction that’s lifted, people are still going to be cautious.
While there are still stark reminders of Covid-19 – Like masked people, floor markers, one way systems and trolley cleaning stations – people are still going to be alert to the risk of infection, and thus will want to feel secure when shopping.
Although fashion stores and other unessential retailers have been forced to close during lockdown, Britain’s supermarkets have remained open during the coronavirus pandemic. But shopping at these stores has looked very different, with many people finding themselves in long, socially distanced queues across the car park.
Despite being integral to limiting contact and maintaining hygiene, this isn’t a scene that most retailers will be wanting to recreate when they reopen in the coming weeks or months.
The key to surviving this ongoing crisis seems to be in the way that we as businesses adapt. We’ve slowly acclimatised to lockdown and found innovative ways to keep going. The next step is successfully reopening stores amidst social distancing measures.