The fix – for now?

Since the start of the pandemic, panic and fear enveloped the world thus forcing individuals to make adjustments on their daily lives. Prioritizing health and safety the most, different strategies are being executed to stop the spread of coronavirus. The government discourages people to go out if not necessary, advised everyone to maintain social distancing and avoid social gatherings. Numerous social events were cancelled and universities are now holding online classes. Different sectors except frontlines implemented work from home. As we create a new normal, retail industry looked for ways on how to serve consumers efficiently at the comfort of their home.  

Online shopping became more in demand nowadays amidst the closing of shopping centers.  According to Adobe Analytics, which measures the buying power of digital consumers, buy online/pick-up in store orders surged 208 percent between April 1 and April 20 compared with a year ago, as consumers continued applying social distancing to shopping to limit their exposure to COVID-19. Additionally, Adobe reported that U.S. online sales shot up 49 percent from March 11 to April 21 compared with a baseline from March 1 to March 10.  

Kimco Realty Corp. and Federal Realty Investment Trust are examples of two large shopping center owners putting up curbside pickup areas at their centers. As grocers are already offering curbside pickups, it’s also time for non-essential retailers to get back on track and make the best out of the situation. Luckily, their landlords are there to help. Curbside pickup is a way to get consumers adapt to the changing shopping routines and provide the goods in the earliest possible time while ensuring that the businesses are still running. Big retail landlords believe that these programs will help to boost the sales of their tenants as the government slowly permits more human activities.  

The process starts when a customer places an order with the store through their website, app or by calling, and chooses curbside pickup. The retailer provides the customer their assigned pickup zone where they will bring the items and place it on the vehicle’s trunk. The customer is instructed to call the store once they’ve arrived, indicating which spot they are in. 

Curbside pickup might be today’s fix but when all of this is over, people will return to in-store shopping eventually. Online shopping might be handy but it provides less of the shopping experience itself. It also prevents impulsive buying from the consumers which is a disadvantage for retailers in obtaining more sale. This is the chance for landlords and tenants to maximize their efforts and come up with flexible ideas in making sure they still profit in this trying times.