AGE-FRIENDLY: Is your business?

Is your business age friendly?

We often hear about our ageing society and the power of the ‘grey pound’. Yet progress among businesses towards attracting and including older consumers is slow – many older people still struggle to access and navigate shops and other businesses. This results in exclusion and frustration for many people, and wasted opportunities for businesses.

Age UK has produced a report (Download Age-friendly business report – PDF file) that aims to help businesses become more accessible to and friendly towards older people. Here are some of their top tips:

  • Toilets & Seats: Provide appropriate toilets and seating, essential facilities that give some people the confidence to go shopping at all.
  • Online: Ensure websites are well-designed and useable for everyone, and provide a non-frustrating delivery service.
  • Paying: Support people who cannot use self-service channels, and provide dementia friendly checkouts.
  • Telephone: Ensure call handlers speak clearly and at the right pace, with patience and respect, and reduce the use of telephone menus.
  • Don’t Ignore: Do not ignore older shoppers or make assumptions about what they want to buy or what help they need.
  • Point Out: Support older people to navigate stores, being on hand to show them where items are and designing a safe environment.
  • Service: Provide excellent customer service, including polite, helpful, patient and ‘human’ staff who don’t spout jargon.
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