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Retailers Tell Us Capacity Increases Are Needed As Winter Hits & The Holidays Approach; One In Three Worry About Their Viability

Recently the Minnesota Retailers Association along with several local chambers of commerce surveyed retailers relating to the current COVID customer capacity restrictions in place across the State. Overwhelmingly retailers subject to the current 50 percent capacity restriction indicated a strong desire to move to at least 75 precent before the Thanksgiving holiday, with one in three retailers saying the viability of their business depends on an increase.

Retailers indicated such an increase is important as they have leveraged their businesses to invest in seasonal and holiday inventory. And after being closed to in-store customers and soft sales during the pandemic, the final few months of 2020 are a make-it or break-it sales season for many.

The vast majority of retailers report they feel prepared for more capacity and have the processes and systems in place to do so safely and comfortably for both customer and employees, and a capacity increase will result in the addition of seasonal and long term job opportunities for Minnesotans across the state at a critical time.

In addition, the survey showed retailers are proud of the job the industry has done during the pandemic and are aware this is not the year for large crowds, as can be typically seen on holiday traffic days such as the day after Thanksgiving. As such, many retailers are spreading sales out over a longer period and with continued alternative shopping options including curbside, delivery and shipping.

Retailers also told us the State has a role to play in partnership with retailers to continue to tell the story of how this industry is responding to the pandemic and the precautions taken to protect consumers and employees.

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