shopping mall cleaning checklist

May 8, 2024

Shopping Mall Cleaning Checklist In NYC: A Complete Guide

Table of content

Have the overflowing trash, smudged windows, and dirty surfaces of your shopping mall started to haunt your dreams?

Imagine a customer walking into your shopping complex ready to treat themselves. However, instead of sparking displays, they are welcomed by grimy floors!

In the competitive world of retail, first impressions are valuable. A clean, well-maintained environment is crucial for aesthetics and healthy and satisfied consumers. Plus, a dirty mall can lead to several problems, from health issues and regulation concerns to declining customer satisfaction.

Luckily, you have us to help you out!

We understand the importance of keeping your shopping center shining. That's why, in today's blog, we present a comprehensive shopping mall cleaning checklist packed with tips and guidance to transform your mall into an inviting space for guests.

So, let's dive in!

Why Is Shopping Mall Cleaning Important?

Shopping malls are bustling hubs of activities. With thousands of people passing through their doors daily and contributing to the high foot traffic, keeping the space neat and clean is crucial.

The clean environment of your mall will not only create a healthy space but also aid with establishing a positive impression on customers. It will encourage them to spend more time in the mall and prevent the spread of illnesses and germs. A clean work environment can boost employee morale, job satisfaction, and productivity.

Having a shopping mall cleaning checklist in NYC can be incredibly helpful in achieving this goal. It will help enhance your company's brand image, building a welcoming atmosphere that attracts repeat visits.  

Are you still trying to convince yourself to clean your mall professionally?

Here are more important reasons to change your mind!

  • Health and safety: A clean retail space is crucial for maintaining the health and safety of employees and customers and reducing the risk of falls, trips, and slips. Along with preventing accidents, regular cleaning will minimize the presence of viruses and germs.
  • Customer experience: Who wants to shop in a dirty, cluttered mall? According to a recent survey in the US, nearly 99% of consumers would not return to a retail store with poor cleanliness and hygiene. Shoppers are much more likely to return to where hygiene is a top priority.
  • Brand image: For shoppers, a well-kept shopping space signifies the brand's commitment to quality and attention to detail. It reflects your brand's dedication to serving consumers nothing but the best, which boosts brand reputation and attracts more consumers.
  • Competitive Advantage: The retail industry is highly competitive. Sometimes, hygiene can be a differentiating factor between you and your competitor. The spotless environment can set you apart and help drive more foot traffic and sales.
  • Regulatory compliance: Shopping malls typically have complex environments regulated by different laws, including fire safety, building codes, and accessibility standards. Besides that, the food courts and restrooms must follow the strict protocols of the health department and specific cleaning regulations. Following a cleaning checklist for shopping malls in NY can help you adhere to these laws. On the contrary, breaking them can lead to fines.
  • Odor control: The unpleasant odor coming from the dirty corners of your mall will deter shoppers and create a negative perception of your brand. Routine cleaning can eradicate odors and keep the retail space fresh and filled.
  • Increased longevity of products: An unhygienic environment affects the health of your guests, employees, and assets. Dirt buildup on equipment, products, fixtures, and flooring can reduce their quality and longevity, requiring constant investment in replacements and repairs.
  • Sustainable practices: Around 75% to 85% of US shoppers think about the environmental impact of their purchase. They prefer shopping from brands and stores that prioritize sustainability. A great way to appeal to this customer segmentation is by investing in eco-friendly practices, such as environmentally-friendly cleaning products.
  • Minimized liability: A clean and organized environment lowers the risk of injuries and accidents. It protects your business from legal issues and liability claims and boosts employee productivity, motivation, and morale.

Process of Cleaning In Shopping Malls

What can be more attractive than extensive collections of diverse stores under one roof?

The allure of a shopping mall attracts a lot of foot traffic, opening doors to germs and messes. Therefore, it's significant to have a detailed process for keeping your shopping mall pristine and tidy.

Here's an example of a typical shopping mall cleaning process to inspire your checklist to clean a shopping mall in NYC.

  • Evaluate your mall's cleaning needs: Take a walk through your mall and identify the areas that need the most attention. Determine which mall parts require regular cleaning and which corners you can clean weekly or monthly. Also, decide how frequently you should clean each room of the mall.
  • Create a detailed plan: Besides having a checklist, create a detailed cleaning plan for daily cleaning, deep cleaning, specialized cleaning, and other considerations. Your daily cleaning plan may cover high-traffic areas like restrooms and related chores, such as trash removal. The deep cleaning section should mention highly touched surfaces, like floors, carpets, and other regions. The specialized cleaning list should include assets and equipment that require monthly or quarterly maintenance. For instance, it could be the mall's air ducts, HVAC equipment, escalator maintenance, and power washing exterior facades.
  • Do you want to outsource the cleaning job? With so much on your plate already, you may need more time to build an in-house team to prepare and follow a shopping mall cleaning checklist. In that scenario, consider outsourcing the task. Hiring a professional cleaning company offers several benefits over in-house teams. They cost significantly less in the long run. Plus, you don't have to invest in training them or purchasing all the cleaning equipment.
  • Invest in the right tools and products: If you have an in-house cleaning team, ensure they use the correct cleaning products for each surface. The products should be safe for the space and the people around it. Also, ensure your cleaning team has appropriate personal protective equipment to safeguard against skin irritation or inhalation.
  • Research to hire the correct cleaning company: If hiring professional cleaners, select a company with sufficient experience cleaning malls. They should have positive reviews, a good industry reputation, and proper permits and licenses. You may also wish to know about their cleaning solutions, the type of equipment they use, the credibility of their team, and liability in case of damages and accidents.
  • Additional consideration: Besides the above points, your cleaning process should consider when the cleanings will occur. To minimize disruptions, avoid peak hours or deep clean the dirty areas at night. Furthermore, wet floor signs or caution tapes should be used to warn employees and customers about ongoing work.

Shopping Center Cleaning Essentials

A NYC shopping mall cleaning checklist goes beyond emptying trash cans and mopping floors. While those are vital tasks, many more nooks and corners will demand your attention. To fulfill this demand, you will need cleaning supplies and tools. These tools are essential to keep your shopping mall squeaky clean.

Here's a comprehensive list of all the essential cleaning tools and supplies you will require to keep your mall squeaky clean.

  • Vacuum Cleaner: Use a commercial vacuum cleaner to remove dirt and dust from your mall's floors and carpets.
  • Buckets: You'll need sturdy buckets to hold and mix cleaning solutions.
  • Broom & Dustpan: Brooms and dustpans will help remove accumulated dirt from hard-to-reach corners.
  • Mop: Use dry, wet, and sponge mops to remove debris and disinfect the floor.
  • Gloves and masks: Depending on your cleaning, you may need gloves and masks to protect yourself from harmful chemicals.
  • Microfiber cloths: Add microfiber clothes, paper towels, and cleaning rags to your shopping mall cleaning checklist in NYC for detailed cleaning after removing the large dirt particles from a surface.
  • Glass cleaning clothes or paper: For windows and other glass surfaces, apply a glass cleaning solution with a suitable cloth or paper. A general cleaning cloth can leave a cloudy, streak-filled finish on the glass.
  • Industrial floor scrubber: These scrubbers are ideal for cleaning uncarpeted high-traffic surfaces.
  • Detergent: Most commercial spaces use synthetic detergent in liquid, powder, gel, or crystal form to remove stubborn stains.
  • Acids: Acids can easily remove rust and mineral deposits from moisture-prone areas, like the restroom.
  • Abrasives: You can apply abrasives with quality scrubbers to remove accumulated dirt and grime from busy areas like the kitchen. For light stains, use bleach, baking soda, or vinegar.
  • Degreasers: Degreaser is another product to keep your mall's kitchen squeaky. Look for non-fuming, non-toxic variations to prevent chemical contamination.
  • Antibacterial soap: Any location with a bathroom or kitchen should have antibacterial soaps to help keep germs away.
  • Trash Bags: Ensure every dustbin in your shopping mall has a trash bag to quickly transport the collected dirt and dust.
  • Anti-dust spray: An anti-dust spray keeps dust off frequently used surfaces.
  • Mold and mildew cleaner: Keep a set of mold and mildew cleaners nearby for the moisture-prone areas.
  • Insecticides: If you notice the number of pests rising in your commercial space, use an insecticide to prevent infestation.

Safety Measures To Clean A Shopping Mall

Cleaners frequently deal with various hazardous materials, dust, and dirt. Without proper safety measures, these materials can have a notable negative impact on their health. So, whether hiring professional janitorial services or employing an in-house team to follow your NYC shopping mall cleaning checklist, you must ensure they take the appropriate safety measures.

Here are a few safety measures you shall ensure to safeguard your employees from unforeseen circumstances.

  • Working with hazardous substances: Cleaning chemicals can be extremely harmful if they come into contact with the body. To prevent such dangerous situations, ensure your staff read all the labels and manufacturer's instructions, use protective equipment when handling the chemicals, and store them in the appropriate place.
  • PPE: Your cleaning staff should each have the required personal protective equipment, such as gloves, safety shoes, uniforms, and goggles.
  • Employee training: Most professional cleaners receive training for handling different cleaning equipment and safety practices. However, if you maintain an in-house team, you will be responsible for training them on using cleaning tools, handling hazardous material, understanding warning signs, and more.
  • Use proper lifting techniques: Cleaning commercial spaces like shopping malls often involves lifting heavy objects. Not knowing the proper techniques for lifting heavy materials can lead to injuries and strains. So, ensure your hired cleaners have dollies and understand safe lifting techniques.
  • Use caution when working with electrical equipment: Make sure your staff always unplug electrical equipment before cleaning them, and use caution when handling plugs and cords. Also, avoid wrapping the cords around the edges, pulling them, or keeping them near water.
  • Be aware of fire exits: Your janitors should be mindful of the location of the nearest fire extinguisher and know how to operate it when necessary.

Specialized Cleaning Techniques In Shopping Malls

Following a checklist to clean shopping malls in NYC presents unique challenges. Considering the center's multiple floors, the diverse selection of retail stores, various food courts, and their sheer size, you will face some complexities that demand specialized cleaning techniques.

What specialized techniques are we talking about?

Look below!

  • Fight stains and spills in the food court:

When entering a food court, you expect it to emit the enticing aroma of freshly cooked meals and not a foul odor. However, the heavy traffic and frequent spills can make it hard to maintain the appearance.

Hence, mopping the floors and wiping down the tables ensure an effective trash removal strategy for the food courts. Remember to sweep around the dumpsters, rotate brushes and mops, and use suitable cleaners to eradicate stubborn stains and crumbs stuck between seating areas and tiles. Furthermore, you can install odor neutralizers to maintain prolonged freshness, particularly around garbage disposal points.

  • Clean retail stores for complete customer satisfaction:

The appearance of your mall's retail stores will influence customer perception. Considering no one prefers to shop in an unclean environment, ensure frequently used areas, like fitting rooms, always remain clean and fresh. Add carpets, mirrors, racks, escalators and elevators, upholstery and seating, floors, air ducts, and ventilation systems to your NYC shopping mall cleaning checklist.

  • Use of advanced cleaning machines:

While some dust and stains can be removed with one swipe, others require more effort.

Cleaning tools, such as scrubbers, vacuum cleaners, and sweepers, can be helpful in those moments. They can make cleaning much quicker and effortless. Besides that, power washing exterior walls and parking lots should be considered to eliminate grime buildup.

Deep cleaning methods with high-powered steam cleaners work wonders on stubborn dirt. However, these specialized cleaning methods require professional hands. So, be sure to hire a licensed cleaning company.

Daily Cleaning Checklist In Shopping Malls

Keeping an entire shopping mall clean and well-maintained takes work. Due to the enormous size of the building, it's easy to miss some spots or mix up your cleaning products.

The best way to avoid these errors is to follow an organized daily cleaning checklist for shopping malls.
Here's a checklist example to help you get started!

1. Shopping mall cleaning checklist for entrance and exit areas

Your shopping center's entry and exit areas are the most visible to visitors. These areas usually cover the entrances or fronts of the doors and windows. A dirty entrance/exit area will deter customers from coming in, so you must always keep them free of dirt and dust.

Take these steps to ensure the cleanliness of your mall's exit-entrance area:

  • Clean the exterior and interior of the door and window glass
  • Clean and disinfect door handles
  • Tidy up the signage around the doorway
  • Clean exterior planters and benches
  • Empty and clean the exterior trash can
  • Remove cobwebs from the entryway
  • Ensure there is litter around the exit/entryways
  • Carry out a detailed floor cleaning
  • Sweep and vacuum doormats and entryways

 2. Shopping area cleaning

Shopping areas should be near the top of your shopping mall cleaning checklist in NYC, as they are highly vulnerable to accumulating dust, dirt, abandoned items, and litter.

To keep these areas healthy and clean, you shall:

  • Dust and clean the shelves
  • Clean cabinets and displays
  • Dust and clean décor, fixtures and furniture
  • Clean mirrors, partitions, and glass surfaces
  • Organize the products and merchandise
  • Pick up and relocate misplaced products
  • Remove trash
  • Clean walls and carpets
  • Use Vacuum to get rid of dirt from the floors, carpets as well as furniture
  • Sweep and mop hard floors
  • Clean and disinfect shopping carts and baskets

3. Cleaning the checkout area

While a cluttered checkout area might be a norm in many shopping centers, it can slow down your employees.
To deliver your customers a pleasant experience, make sure to

  • Remove all the dirt and grime from the checkout stand by dusting, cleaning, and wiping
  • Clean the glass surfaces
  • Tidy up the display area
  • Empty trash
  • Organize merchandise

4. Cleaning checklist for the restroom

Since the pandemic, avoiding the spread of bacteria and illnesses has become even more critical. Restrooms and changing rooms are the top places for germs to thrive in your shopping mall. These areas can lead to viral illnesses, dissatisfied consumers, and sick employees without regular cleaning.
So, follow this checklist to ensure guests and employees leave your shopping mall secure and delighted.

  • Empty trash
  • Stock up on hand towels, toilet paper, soap, and dispensers
  • Clean the surfaces, sink, and fixtures
  • Unclog drains
  • Wipe down backsplash
  • Clean glass surfaces and mirrors
  • Clean and disinfect the changing stations
  • Clean and disinfect toilet and urinal surfaces
  • Sanitize doors and knobs
  • Sweep and mop the floor
  • Wipe down the closets and cabinets

5. Stairway cleaning checklist

Cleaning stairways is more complex compared to flat surfaces. They are often cluttered with small objects, dirt, and grime, and you can't clean them during peak hours.
Hence, you have to schedule the chore and carry out these steps strategically:

  • Pick up trash
  • Clean glass surfaces
  • Sweep, mop, or vacuum the stairs and landings
  • Dust and polish railings, fixtures, ledges and handrails

6. Storage area cleaning checklist

Keeping your shopping center clean and well-maintained is essential for satisfying your visitors and retaining your employees. For instance, if your storage area and backrooms need to be more organized and organized, they will create tripping hazards, lead to workplace accidents, and make it harder for your employees to navigate the room and access essential items. Therefore, make sure your shopping mall cleaning checklist in NYC recognizes the backroom and storage areas.

Here are a few tasks your storage area cleaning checklist must include:

  • Pick up trash
  • Sanitize door handles
  • Sweep and mop floors
  • Clean air vents and windows
  • Dust shelves, fixtures, and furniture

7. Back office cleaning checklist

To tackle the crowd, the front and back offices must be more organized and straightforward. Regularly cleaning them can reduce chaos, make it easier for your staff to find what they are looking for, and keep things in order.
For a spotless back office, follow this checklist:

  • Take the trash out
  • Clean glass surfaces, including the window sills
  • Dust, wipe, and polish chairs, desks, counters, and tables
  • Vacuum soft furniture and carpets
  • Sanitize light switches, door handles, telephones, lamps, and other regularly used items
  • Mop hard floor surfaces
  • Declutter and organize desks and tables

8. Breakroom cleaning checklist

The staff room can quickly become messy if not regularly vacuumed, mopped, and dusted. To help you keep the breakroom in check, we present a comprehensive shopping mall breakroom cleaning checklist.

  • Trash removal
  • Throw out old refrigerator food
  • Clean dirty dishes and unload the dishwasher
  • Clear sink and countertops and sanitize them
  • Wipe down the exterior of drawers, refrigerators, cupboards
  • Clean the daily used equipment, such as microwaves
  • Vacuum and mop the floors
  • Wipe and sanitize doors and handles

Choosing The Right Cleaning Services For Your Shopping Mall

Not all cleaning services are equally dedicated or professional. When cleaning a multi-layered place like a shopping mall where every corner is unique, it's essential to carefully analyze your options, discuss the vital elements, and ensure the professionals you are about to hire can indeed follow your NYC shopping mall cleaning checklist.

To kick-start the hiring process, let's discuss the most critical factors to consider when looking for professional cleaners for your shopping mall.

  • Reputation of cleaning service: Look for cleaning companies with a positive reputation in the retail industry. You can check their reviews, portfolios, ratings, and experience to assess their reputation. Also, consider getting recommendations and references from peers to make your search even more straightforward. When evaluating reviews, consider comments on the quality of work, used products, cost, and customer care.
  • Customizable cleaning services: Your shopping center's needs, requirements, and complexities are different from those of others. So why should your cleaning plan be similar? Hence, we recommend looking for professionals who deliver customizable solutions that complement the unique aspects of your space, such as parking lots, carpeted areas, and food courts.
  • Green cleaning products: Eco-friendly cleaning products are better for the environment and your employees and customers' health. Therefore, select a cleaning company that uses eco-friendly products whenever possible to avoid leaving harmful residue.
  • Necessary cleaning equipment: When hiring commercial cleaners, confirm they have all the required products and equipment to meet your needs. For instance, you can ask them how they plan to clean the hard-to-reach areas or if they have carpet polishers.
  • License and insurance: Hiring cleaners with proper credentials, such as a license and insurance, is necessary. Otherwise, you can only hold them accountable if everything goes well.
  • Price and flexibility: Hundreds of people storm your shopping mall daily to spend their money. It's simply not possible to clean it during the opening hours. Hence, you will require flexible professionals who can work late at night. Also, you would want them to have a transparent pricing structure within your budget. Otherwise, you might have to deal with hidden charges down the road.

Sterling Cleaning For Professional Shopping Mall Cleaning Needs

Creating a shopping mall cleaning checklist is the easiest part of keeping your retail center organized.
Regularly cleaning a complex demands a ton of effort and investment. After all, it's about boosting your business, protecting employee health, and ensuring complete customer satisfaction. Hence, you only have the option to choose the best. So, look no further and connect with Sterling Cleaning Services today!
We understand the unique demands of shopping complexes. Thus, we utilize custom strategies, eco-friendly products, and the safest cleaning equipment for each corner. We guarantee you complete satisfaction without exceeding your budget!

Read Our Other Blogs

Apartment Building Cleaning Checklist

Bank Cleaning Checklist

Benefits Of Hiring Professional Cleaning Services

Latest Blogs

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form

Get in touch

Please reach us at any time to set up an appointment to review your commercial cleaning requirements. Sterling will provide an on-site review of your janitorial needs, then create a custom proposal that fits both your specifications and budget


303 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10016


Phone: 212-803-3328

Office Hours

Mon to Sat - 9 AM to 6 PM