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Retailers Adapt Operations To Fit The Post-Outbreak Marketplace

April 27, 2020

Beverage alcohol retailers continue to find new ways to meet consumers’ needs during this time of mass social isolation and self-quarantining. Plexiglas shields at checkout counters, strict social distancing policies, and significantly increased delivery and curbside pickup services have become key factors to keeping businesses open during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Austin, Texas-based Twin Liquors expanded the number of stores offering delivery and in-store pickup from 12 to more than 40 stores. Twin Liquors has also implemented extra safety precautions and preparedness, including installing Plexiglas guards for protection between cashiers and customers, in its stores across Texas.

In the Midwest, Fort Wayne, Indiana-based Cap n’ Cork is experiencing solid 25% sales growth across its 15 stores. “Sales were strong as the government indicated some industries would close, and then when they closed restaurants and allowed curbside only and drive-thru, our business started to really get crazy,” says Cap n’ Cork co-owner Joe Doust. “The same products are being purchased, but everyone is buying more.”

Beginning on April 8, Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb restricted beverage alcohol package stores exclusively to curbside pickup. But the restriction hasn’t dampened sales. “Phone orders have been very strong, which is helpful in giving us time to process orders,” Doust says, noting that Cap n’ Cork has increased staffing to bolster the service. “Customers can also pull up and we’re outside to manually take and fulfill their order.” Market Watch has a full report.—Kevin Barry

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