Nationwide Marketing Group Survey Paints First Picture of Independent Retail Landscape, Post COVID-19 Outbreak

Written by Rob Stott

March 20, 2020

On Thursday evening, Nationwide Marketing Group conducted a quick-turn survey of its membership to try to get a better understanding of how the independent retail channel is responding to and operating through the fast-evolving COVID-19 outbreak. More than 460 members responded to the survey in a 24-hour period, providing the industry’s first glimpse into the independent retail landscape.

Among the key findings from the survey, two-thirds of reporting members said they plan to maintain normal operating hours. More than half of dealers reported year-over-year comparable sales that have met or exceeded last year, a figure that comes despite 52% of participating dealers reporting a significant decrease in foot traffic over the past week. On the digital side, 76% of dealers said that online traffic was either steady or up. Only 5% of dealers have taken the drastic step of completely shutting down their stores.

What’s clear from the survey, though, is that independent retailers are making at least some operational changes in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, with the intent of creating a safe environment to continue operating a retail business that is safe for both customers and employees. Slightly over 95% of dealers reported that they’ve increased cleaning and sanitization processes in-store and with delivery and service teams in the field. Another 21% of dealers reported implementing social distancing practices with their internal team interactions and interactions with customers in-store and in the field. And 20% of dealers reported implementing new precautionary measures around deliveries, including wearing gloves and shoe covers, mandatory hand sanitizer use and calling customers to ensure no one at the home is sick.

As the COVID-19 outbreak has created an environment of fluidity, Nationwide Marketing Group intends to continue surveying its members over the next several weeks in an effort to continue tracking the health of the industry in the face of this pandemic.

The full results of the survey are available on the Nationwide Marketing Group website, and on the regularly-updated Coronavirus Resources page.


Connect With Us!

More Podcasts

146: How Beko Has Built a Culture Around Convenience and Health

146: How Beko Has Built a Culture Around Convenience and Health

The commitment to creating products that promote convenience and a healthier lifestyle for the consumer (and world) at Beko is one of the things that sets the brand apart.

145: Crafting a Compelling Story — and Badass Products — with Austere

145: Crafting a Compelling Story — and Badass Products — with Austere

As a brand in its infancy, Austere should’ve stood no chance against a raging pandemic. But Ghazarian and her team created such a compelling brand story — not to mention some seriously awesome product — that the business not only survived, but is thriving.