Ask an Expert

1325–75; Middle English (adj.) < Latin expertus, past participle of experīrī to try, experience

Every day we live with the need to communicate. We need to rise above simple translation and see the meaning, when we build a website we need to include everyone (not just the sighted) and when we travel we are faced with challenging physical barriers. I know what it's like and think I have the depth and resources to help others make the right decisions.

Each month I will be responding to a question, chosen from a pool of some of the most commonly asked ones that I have been asked over the years and continue to be asked. A complete archive of "Ask an Expert" articles can be found here.

Donna Jodhan, a woman with short dark hair and glasses, sits at a table with a laptop in front of her.

This month, I'd like to answer the following question:

Making a shopping trip more accessible

Before you say no or turn thumbs down on these suggestions; consider these thoughts.

You can definitely increase your revenue and reduce both your internal and external costs and here's how.

Take it from me! I have been an accessibility awareness consultant and advisor since 1998 and I continue to help companies to increase their revenues, reduce their costs, and reach hidden consumer markets!

This is the month when we all take time to plan and execute shopping trips and it is a time when we should put some extra effort in to planning shopping trips that accessible for our seniors and for persons with a disability.

With this in mind, I have some valueable tips to share and hopefully it can help to increase both your customer base and your revenues.

  • Time to advertise a business to offer shopping trips for seniors and persons with disabilities.
  • Employ and train staff in the rudiments of how to communicate with, interact with, and cater to the needs of those as stated above.
  • Take the time to determine what seniors in your area are most wanting to shop for.
  • Do the same determination for shoppers with special needs.
  • It may be better to split these 2 groups into separate ventures.
  • Think of offering end to end services; from pick up at home to drop off at home.
  • Be mindful of how much time your trips will last as both seniors and persons with special needs can only spend a certain length of time in malls before they grow tired.
  • Be sure to include bathroom breaks and eating breaks.

This should be a good start and have fun as you engage in this.

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