Online shopping increasing due to COVID-19
ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - Cyber Monday is a day that many shoppers take advantage of online deals to get ready for the holidays. For small businesses, it’s one of the biggest days of the year to make sales, especially in a year where it has been a challenge.
Many customers have reverted to shopping online this year as COVID-19 has caused limitations on the number of people in stores. Dixie Lemons, the owner of Hoity Toity Boutique in Alexandria, said due to a smaller amount of in-person traffic, she has seen the largest increase in online sales in her 10 years of business.
“It hasn’t just been local people on my website. We’ve shipped to numerous states as social media has just picked up as a whole. You can now buy directly off my Facebook or Instagram page along with the website. It’s just one more way to make it convenient for people,” said Lemons.
After what has been an up and down year financially for most businesses because of the coronavirus, local shops are hoping that the holiday season helps pick up their business to end the year.
Carla Ledet, the owner of Terra Home, said, “Without our customers, there’s just no way we would have been able to make it this year. Everyone has been very supportive and still shopping local, even more, this year than ever before.”
Lemons added that a strong Christmas season would help her business recover from the deficit that they faced this year. Plus, it would reassure her customers that they are staying in business.
On Black Friday, many customers filled the stores, but Dr. David Holcombe with the Office of Public Health said Cyber Monday and online shopping, in general, is the safest option when searching for holiday gifts.
Dr. Holcombe said, “There has been movement and that’s why the cyber part has increased so dramatically. People realize they don’t have to go to the store. They can get what they need and what they want on the internet just like online shopping. That’s been up 35% so, in some ways, people are getting the message.”
Both Ledet and Lemons said they have tried to make shopping more convenient this year from more ways to shop online, to curbside pickup, to even home deliveries so their customers don’t have to physically come in the store.
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