As it joins the ranks of returning merchants following COVID-19 store closures, Macy’s intends to open 68 retail locations on Monday (May 4) in states that have eased restrictions. CEO Jeff Gennette foresees having all of the approximately 775 locations open again in six weeks, provided that is allowed by state/local governments and that infection rates drop as forecasted, The Wall Street Journal reported.
The 68 Macy’s locations will open in South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Texas and Oklahoma. Approximately 25 percent of them are in some of the 49 shopping centers and outlet malls that Simon Property Group intends to open again over the weekend. The following wave of approximately 50 locations is set to reopen on May 11.
The retailer has been providing curbside pickup at approximately 20 locations. Gennette said, per the outlet, “We don’t know how consumers will respond,” noting that he foresees the locations reopening first will do less than 20 percent of their typical sales volume in the beginning.
Macy’s workers will have to complete a wellness checklist prior to coming to work, while beauty departments will provide "no-touch" consultations and staffers will hold merchandise that has been tried on for 24 hours.
Beyond Macy’s, Best Buy will reportedly open approximately 200 stores next month for in-store consultations to purchase electronics or appliances. Costco will require shoppers to wear face coverings to shop starting next week.
In separate news, the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) and the National Retail Federation (NRF) recently unveiled a Blueprint for Shopping Safe. The document requests that governors offer consistent, statewide steps for merchants to follow as they reopen stores and work to keep shoppers and staff members safe.
The blueprint outlines three different reopening stages, with the first phase allowing online shopping in addition to contactless curbside pickup and in-home delivery.