How Much is Your Restroom Costing Your Business?

Public restroomA public restroom can provide a much-needed break, or it can turn an otherwise positive experience into a feeling of disgust. If your business has a restroom available for public use, here’s what you need to know.

The Impact of Unclean Restrooms

Sometimes building owners change janitorial companies and for a time don’t have the type of service they normally receive. During the holidays or other peak seasons, traffic may increase so much it’s hard to keep surfaces sanitized and debris cleared away. One sudden plumbing problem can overflow into other areas before management becomes aware there’s a problem. Other times, employees just aren’t motivated to do a good job. Regardless of the reason, a dirty restroom impacts the following:

  • Customer retention – One survey indicates 56 percent of consumers say if a business had a dirty bathroom when they visited, they wouldn’t come back. Grossed out patrons often post their impressions on social media sites like Facebook and Yelp, so their friends and associates don’t even come in for a first visit.
  • Public health – A dirty bathroom could literally make your customers and employees sick. One assessment found more than 77,000 types of bacteria on public toilet seats, floors, sinks, and soap dispensers. Spills and paper towels on the floor also increase the risk of a patron falling when they visit your restroom.
  • Money – When your restroom is untended, plumbing clogs. Vandalism is more likely. Fixtures corrode and need more frequent replacement.

Restroom Best Practices

Cleanliness ranks at the top of the list when it comes to what makes an inviting restroom. Respondents also said they were irritated by empty toilet paper dispensers, toilets that hadn’t been flushed, broken door locks, and bad smells.

Avoid making a bad impression by providing staff with effective cleaning products and extensive training on how to clean. Develop a plan for systematic cleaning and set up a system that checks to make sure it’s done. Automate paper towel distributing, toilet flushing, and soap dispensing to reduce the number of surfaces guests have to touch and reduce waste.