Consumer Perception on the Role of Business Response to COVID-19

NSF survey results found that consumers are most likely to trust a business that clearly posts COVID-19 signage.

Americans are most likely to trust a business that goes beyond government regulations, clearly posts COVID-19 safety signage and has independent verification of hygiene standards, according to a recent study.

The nationwide survey, commissioned by the public health and safety organization NSF, provides insight on the high expectations of consumers while underlining the need for businesses to do more to regain the confidence of their customers.

Three out of four Americans (75%)

say COVID-19 requirements set by third-party experts make them feel safer.

64% of respondents

say going above and beyond the minimum COVID-19 requirements makes them trust a business more.

When asked to identify measures that would help them to trust – and return to – a business, consumers overwhelmingly opted for clearly positioned COVID-19 safety signage and rules of engagement, along with independent expert validation of a business’s hygiene procedures. A majority of respondents wanted businesses to be clearer and more visible about the COVID-19 prevention measures that are already in place.

Only 49% of Americans

think businesses are doing enough to protect their customers from COVID-19.

60% of Americans

say businesses need to be clearer about the COVID-19 preventive measures they have in place – and to make them more visible.

At such a crucial time for the economy, businesses cannot afford to be remiss in their response to COVID-19 and risk losing the faith of their customers. Many understand that business is likely to change significantly in the future, and that many of the customs we are used to will need to change.

Kiss the Handshake Goodbye

Almost three out of four Americans believe it’s risky to greet someone with a handshake, 38% of people say they won’t shake hands or kiss in a greeting until there is a vaccine and 16% say they will never go back to shaking hands.

In response to the challenges posed by COVID-19, NSF has launched Checked by NSF™, an independent program that reviews all safety measures implemented by a business to mitigate COVID-19, makes recommendations based on public health guidelines and monitors ongoing compliance. Businesses that are verified as Checked by NSF™ bear a blue check mark sign, helping consumers to identify establishments at a glance. The program is tailored to help businesses open and operate with continuity – through customized plans based on the latest public health guidance and, crucially, in-depth scientific analysis.

Source: Survey commissioned by NSF, August 2020. Sample size was 1,022 adults. Figures weighed to be representative of all adults in U.S. (age 18+)

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