Consequences of Tracked in Dirt on the Soles of Shoes

Consequences of Tracked in Dirt on the Soles of Shoes

Picture two grocery stores: identical in their products, pricing, size, and layout etc.

The first store has dirt on the floor and grime on the walls of the dimly lit establishment, hiding the true state of the chipped, cracked, scratched, damaged floors. You decide to stay and do your shopping, despite the first impression you had walking in the door. As you are shopping  you are carefully checking expiration dates as you go, questioning what are you getting yourself into and what are you going to be walking away with.

The second store is clean and inviting; from the second you walk into the store you are greeted by bright/ warm lighting and an entrance mat that wipes your shoes preventing dirt and debris from entering your establishment. The aisles are pristine, and you can tell that a lot of care and attention to detail goes into maintaining the facility and enhancing the overall customer experience.

Which store would you rather shop at?

Most often, the part of your building that customers notice first, upon entering your establishment, is your floor. Clean, tidy floors with a well-kept entrance matting system gives clients a perception of care; it suggests that your facility values cleanliness and the appearance of the store to make the customer experience apriority.  On the other hand, dirty floors and sloppy mats can have a very different effect – if the areas your customers can see look sloppy and poorly-kept, what do the other spaces that the client can’t see look like, and how does that translate to the quality of the product and the services received?

First impressions matter and customers are constantly evaluating their surroundings to determine how they feel about your store, their overall experience, and whether or not they will continue doing their shopping at your business in the future or not. You need to really think about the message that dirt and debris in your facility is saying to your customers, clients, employees, and any other patrons entering your shop/building.

BaseTread 200 Aluminum Entrance Mat at a Grocery Store

Dirt Consequences: Permanent Damage to Your Floors and Safety Concerns

As dirt, water, and debris gets tracked into your facility, on the bottoms of shoes, it can create permanent damage to your floor surface over time. Having an aluminum entrance mat will protect your floors while also keeping your facility clean. Aluminum entrance mats are designed to stop dirt in its tracks with their wiping, scraping and dirt capturing abilities. Less dirt and debris entering your establishment means less dirt and debris being ground into your floors, leading to cost savings on flooring preservation/finishing schedules. The floor surfaces also stay cleaner longer helping you save money on care and maintenance costs reducing the need to sweep, vacuum, and mop as frequently. Simply put, aluminum entrance mats save you time and resources on cleaning and maintenance expenses.

Not only does dirt look uninviting, but it can also be a safety hazard if tracked into your facility. Individuals can slip and fall on loose debris and potentially create a costly/expensive lawsuit for your business. Aluminum entrance mats help keep your commercial building clean, safe, and beautiful; they are built to last, creating long term benefits and savings to your facility.

Entrance Mat Effectiveness: Dirt Retention

Entrance Mats are an essential business need. They are engineered to help create a clean, safe, and preferred environment. Without an effective matting system up to 24 pounds of dirt can be deposited monthly by 1000 people, and foot traffic can remove over 50% of the floor finish within the first six feet of entry into the building with those same 1000 people entering the establishment.

Now a grocery in a small location has about 200-250 people entering the store daily or roughly 1,500 people entering weekly… that is a lot more dirt and debris entering your facility throughout the month, and as result regular care and maintenance should be a part of your establishments upkeep routine to reduce the likelihood of someone tripping an falling your facility and an expensive lawsuit being generated against your company

An effective entrance floor mat system should include a combination of scraping and drying mechanisms designed to remove dirt and moisture from the soles of shoes. Ideally your entrance floor mat should be as long as possible, we recommend 15 - 25+ feet in length in order to maximize efficiency, if feasible. The stride of an average person is 2'- 6". If you have a 10-foot long entrance mat, shoes will only step on the mat 4 times. In heavy traffic areas such as a grocery store, you will want more matting than you would in a medical office. Climate conditions (snow/sand/dirt) should also be taken into account when choosing your mat size.

Check out all of that dirt and debris being swept up from a recess before placing the entrance mat back in place!

Key Characteristics of an Effective Matting System:

  • Fall-Through: A fall-through product is best used as your first line of defense against incoming dirt and debris.  Fall-through products allow the larger soil particles to fall below the mat surface, preventing them from being tracked into your facility with the incoming foot traffic.
  • Brush:  A good brushing action is key for an effective matting system; it should have stiff fibers that brush off in-coming soil. Another important aspect of this matting is that it traps the soil toward the back of the mat until it can be removed, thus preventing it from being tracked in further to the building.
  • Dry:  An effective matting system will finish the job by drying bottoms of the shoes of the incoming foot traffic.  These mats should be made of fine fibers that can retain a large amount of moisture and can dry quickly.
  • Style:  Since your entryways are one of the first things that customers see, it is important to think about style and curbside appeal in order to create a better first impression. Aluminum entrance mats come in a variety of colors and insert types and they are customized to your exact specification, so you can use your entrance mat to enhance your buildings décor and overall appearance while also sending the message that you take pride in your building and the cleanliness of your facility.

When choosing the right entrance mat for your facility it is important to take into consideration the amount of foot traffic, primary use of the entrance and climate/environment your mat will be exposed to. Ronick Matting Systems offers a variety of aluminum entrance mats to fit the unique needs of your establishment, so you can ensure that your customers start their experience on the right foot.

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