There’s an old saying in the restaurant industry that diners can tell a lot about a restaurant by the cleanliness of its restrooms. As a restaurant owner or manager, do you believe this is true? If not, we would like to turn your attention to a recent survey that suggests diners allow their perceptions of public restrooms to influence their patronage.
Traditional thinking suggests that diners are suspicious of any restaurant that doesn’t care enough to keep its restrooms clean. The idea is that restrooms are public spaces. If they are allowed to go uncleaned despite being accessible to the public, does the staff care about the cleanliness of the kitchen? After all, diners don’t have access to the kitchen.
As a company that offers restaurant linens and washroom supplies, we know a thing or two about both. We also know how important perception is to building a reliable customer base. Restaurants with loyal followings are the same restaurants whose customers have only positive perceptions of their facilities, service and food.
Whether you call them restrooms or washrooms, restaurant patrons want them clean. Moreover, clean restrooms lead to higher revenues. A recently released survey from the Bradley Corp. reveals as much. That survey is the company’s 10th annual survey measuring consumer attitudes relating to handwashing and public restrooms.
According to Food & Wine, 52 percent of survey respondents said they would “definitely” or “probably” spend more money at an establishment with clean restrooms. Some 64 percent said that restroom cleanliness is something they actively consider when deciding with whom to do business.
Think about that. As a restaurant owner or manager, more than half your customers could be choosing where to dine on any given night based partially on their perceptions of restrooms. If they have a poor perception of the restrooms in your building, it is quite possible they will choose to dine elsewhere.
The Bradley Corp. insists that its survey respondents have consistently shown a clear preference for high-quality restroom maintenance throughout the 10 years it has been conducting its survey. In a statement describing this year’s survey, the group made it clear that more than half of American consumers are unlikely to return to a business — restaurant or otherwise — that doesn’t take care of its restrooms.
The message from America’s consumers is clear. They want and expect clean restrooms when they leave home. For restaurants, that means restrooms should be scrubbed from top to bottom before the start of each business day. They should then be maintained throughout the day.
We are here to support restaurants with a variety of washroom supplies, ranging from fixtures to roll towels and air-cleaning systems. We also carry both dry and wet mops. If you would like to know more about our washroom and floorcare supplies, we invite you to contact your local Alsco office.
We can also accommodate all your restaurant linen needs. As long as we are going to advise you on washroom supplies, we would love the opportunity to discuss your linen needs as well. For the dining room, we can furnish high-quality tablecloths and napkins. For your staff, count on us for restaurant uniforms, aprons, bar mops and kitchen towels.
Remember, the cleanliness of your restrooms matters to your guests. Don’t let them walk away with a negative perception of your restaurant after seeing a restroom that could have been cleaner. Maintaining clean restrooms doesn’t have to be a monumental effort. With the right supplies and a regular cleaning schedule, you can keep your restrooms in tip-top shape.