The retail industry has found itself on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis. Grocery stores, pharmacies and other retailers offering essential goods remain open and working around the clock to ensure that people can purchase crucial items.
While many of these retailers are taking extraordinary measures to serve the public and increase safety, those retailers deemed non-essential for in-store traffic are implementing creative and inspiring measures to help in the fight, including:
- Lending a hand (literally): In the face of shortages of critical anti-viral supplies, several retailers have repurposed their manufacturing facilities to step up production. For example, a number of well-known fashion and beauty retailers are using their resources to tackle the shortage of hand sanitizer.
- Clothing and protecting front line heroes: Instead of focusing on the latest fashion lines, retailers have turned their talents to clothing needed to protect the medical community. While numerous retailers are busy sewing facial masks, others are using their facilities to create medical overalls and hospital gowns and scrubs. Other companies are providing technical assistance and exploring turning snorkeling masks into ventilators.
While the above retailers have put their facilities and talent to considerable use, essential retailers are doing all they can to make shopping as safe and easy as possible:
- Adapting delivery services: Several pharmacies have waived delivery fees on prescriptions to keep in-store traffic to a minimum while ensuring customers receive critical medications. Meanwhile, others are now offering contactless delivery to comply with social distancing guidelines.
- Special accommodations for at-risk populations: Many stores have implemented “special hours” for at-risk individuals to shop in a less congested environment.
There is no shortage of other examples of the retail community doing everything from keeping shoppers safe and households stocked with necessities, to making sizable monetary and goods donations. It’s inspiring to see how retail is rising to the occasion to make a difference in the lives of so many.