What is an age and dementia friendly business?
An age and dementia friendly business is one in which people of all ages and abilities can comfortably shop or access services. It is a business that has taken steps to be more inclusive of people of all ages and abilities.
Why should my business become Age & Dementia Friendly?
Older adults are a growing market.
- Currently over 32% of Cape Ann residents are aged 60 and older (Massachusetts Healthy Aging Collaborative 2018 Data Report). By 2035 this number is projected to grow, older adults are expected to account for nearly 45% of Cape Ann’s population and at least half the population in Gloucester and Rockport will be 60 or older. (Vintage Population Projections, Donahue Institute, UMASS)
- Older adults are a growing economic force, according to AARP, $0.56 of every dollar spent in the US came from someone 50 or older (The Longevity Economy Outlook, AARP). On average, consumers over age 50 outspend any other age group.
- People are living longer, healthier lives, which means they continue to work and contribute to the economy longer.
- At a time when small businesses need increased sales, tapping into this growing older adult consumer base is critical.
- Older adults often shop earlier than other customers, boosting customer numbers during the traditionally less busy times of day.
Changes that benefit and improve the experience for older customers are good for all customers.
- Changes such as wider aisles or automatic doors not only help older adults, they are great for parents with young children in strollers, people living with disabilities, or customers carrying bundles.
- Well-lit signage with clear font makes it possible for people of all ages to read signs more easily.
- Clear websites that are easy to navigate benefit all.
- Established procedures for the delivery of goods allow businesses to remain nimble in the face of an unexpected weather or health emergency and benefit all.
Making Age and Dementia Friendly changes can be easy and affordable.
- Many changes that would make your business more accessible to older customers are simple to make with the right information
- Changes can be made using already existing resources
- Small changes using resources already on hand are available and can make a big impact for older adults
- This guide is intended to give you a better understanding of your older customers, that understanding is free!
Specific Suggestions for Age & Dementia Friendly Businesses
Good customer service can make all the difference and guarantee loyal customers. Positive shopping experiences translate into better engagement with products and services and increased spending and customer loyalty.