Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

Advice for newsagents confronting another lockdown

Mark Fletcher
July 11th, 2020 · No Comments

Based on what we have seen over the last few days in Victoria since the government announced a second lockdown, people are nervous. While the news reports show empty toilet paper, pasta and baby formula shelves, it is more than this, people are distancing again and they are touching products in-store less. So, it’s back to basics in retail, back to what we know is important:

  1. Show that your shop is clean, safe and easy to shop. Uncluttered, easy access is key to safe shopping.
  2. Have hand sanitiser at the entrance and at the counter with a sign encouraging people to use it.
  3. Encourage staff to wear face masks. This helps set the tone for safe shopping. I saw first-hand the value of this on Thursday. In an area serving older customers it was appreciated.
  4. Ensure the counter is setup for safety of staff and customers.
  5. Have suggested product packs ready to purchase easily – as appropriate to your business.
  6. Offer curbside pickup.
  7. Offer home delivery where possible.
  8. Be positive in-store.
  9. Be positive on socials and on the front foot. This is your opportunity to be clear with o=your messaging outside the business.
  10. Bring to the front of the store things that were popular during lockdown. If appropriate to your business: jigsaws, books, adult colouring books, activity sets, knitting / crochet / craft packs, music, art supplies, home nesting products and tactile products for kids.
  11. Clean regularly and let people see you doing this.

I get that this list is common sense. I mention it as a reminder.

Part of what has happened in Victoria, I think, is complacency within the population due to people thinking we were through it. This has been encouraged by some media reporting on top of corona fatigue. Indeed, some in the media and some politicians have driven the push to get back to normal with dumb Dictator Dan headlines and labels.

As an employer my my primary interest in the shops is employee health and safety. This is why I have taken a strong position on face masks. I am grateful to have a team that gets it.

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Category: Newsagency management · Social responsibility

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