Single basket shopping carts are commonly used by families for their weekly or bi-weekly grocery trips. These vessels provide enough space for significant hauls without becoming too burdensome when navigating aisles. With so much regular use, however, your carts are bound to take on some damage over time. If left unchecked, this ongoing wear and tear can render some of your carts dysfunctional, leaving your customers with fewer options to choose from upon entering your store. Replacing these damaged carts can take a serious blow to your bottom line, so it’s best to focus on maintaining the carts you currently own.
Let’s go over some key tips for single basket wire shopping cart maintenance.
Tips for Maintaining Single Basket Wire Shopping Carts
Get the Right Size for Your Store
If you want to get the longest life out of your wire shopping carts, start by investing in the optimal-sized options. Shopping carts come in a wide range of shapes and sizes, and some of these differences make more or less sense for a given store’s layout and amount of space. If, for instance, you run a small store but provide your customers with large carts, you can expect more collisions between carts and shelves, carts and other carts, etc. Of course, you don’t want to significantly limit the number of things your customers can fit into their cart, either – balance is key. Some collisions are inevitable no matter how small or maneuverable your carts may be. Still, taking cart size and shape into account can help you mitigate the number of these incidents, so your carts don’t incur as many dents, dings, scrapes, and other issues.
Store Them Inside
Impact isn’t the only threat to the well-being of your shopping carts – environmental factors take their toll as well. No matter your local climate, leaving your carts outdoors for extended periods of time leave them vulnerable. In colder regions, snow and road salt can cause corrosion and rust; rain can lead to rust as well; and harsh sunlight can weaken your wire carts, increasing malleability, so they’re easier to dent. As such, it’s best to limit the amount of time your carts stay outdoors. Ideally, your carts should remain safely indoors for the majority of the time. If you operate a large store and offer a large fleet of carts, some will be left outside temporarily for employees to gather and bring back inside – installing covered cart corrals throughout your parking lot will keep your carts safe from rain, UV rays, snow, and more. As an added bonus, these corrals will help keep your carts organized and in place, so they don’t roll away or obscure parking spaces.
Keep Them Clean
Like any other form of maintenance, shopping cart maintenance requires regular cleaning. Carts pick up plenty of dirt and debris both outdoors and indoors as they’re rolled across floors and asphalt surfaces. Before long, your store’s carts can become quite filthy, which not only sullies your reputation but also expedites the deterioration process. Wheels are of particular importance when it comes to cart cleaning, as debris and grime can reduce cart functionality. Maintenance staffers should thoroughly clean carts at least once a week by applying a standard degreaser, brushing away large debris by hand, and power washing all sides of the cart with hot water. When performed properly, this cleaning process will kill bacteria, remove minor rusting, and restore the cart’s shiny appearance.
Inspect Them Often
It’s easy to take your carts for granted. But if you don’t keep a close eye on them, lingering issues can go unnoticed and eventually grow into costly problems – this is why it’s so important to conduct regular shopping cart inspections. There’s no one way to go about these examinations, but your inspections should at least include the following:
- For shopping carts that can hold children, make sure readable safety warnings/information is attached to the cart
- Ensure safety belts are functional and not damaged
- Inspect the frame of basket or cart for damage, including bending, rusting, missing parts, etc.
- Inspect fasteners for damage or missing pieces
- Carefully inspect wheels. Look for loose or missing pieces, test the wheel and make sure cart or roller basket moves in a straight, even path and operates smoothly
- Ensure cart or basket is level
The above applies to plastic and wire shopping cart inspections alike, though the types of damage will differ slightly between these different materials (wire carts can rust whereas plastic carts cannot, for instance).
Invest in Repairs Promptly and When Practical
Staying on top of cart inspections as described above will cue you into problems that need immediate addressing, such as a broken wheel or missing part. In many instances, carts can be repaired with simple part replacements or basic fixes. Investing in these repairs in a prompt manner will increase the odds of success and decrease total cost. That said, if a cart is severely damaged or replacement parts are expensive and hard to track down, it might be more prudent to replace it with a brand new cart. Read our previous blog, “Is Shopping Cart Repair Possible (And Practical)?” for more on this topic.
Make Them Your Own
Customizing your shopping carts isn’t just a great way to reinforce your brand – it’s also a good defense against theft. Carts are stolen or “borrowed” all the time, and you’re more likely to prevent this and retrieve your carts if they’re clearly labeled with your name and logo.
Lastly, one way to maintain your shopping carts is to offer other options for your customers, so they don’t all have to resort to your single basket wire shopping carts. For instance, a customer might be better off with a shopping basket or smaller double-basket shopping cart. With these alternatives at the ready, your larger carts won’t endure as much wear and tear over time. Fortunately, a shopping cart manufacturer like Good L Corp. offers multiple carts and basket types, so you can fill your store with as many durable alternatives as you see fit.
Good L Corporation delivers innovative shopping cart and basket solutions for retailers on a global scale. Good L Corp. can configure the right carryall strategy to boost your retail business, from a fleet of new custom carts to launch your store opening to replacement baskets that supplement your existing shop supply. Let’s get started! Contact us today for a no-pressure sales quote!