COVID-19: Small & Medium Retail Businesses

Goals

To obtain strategies that small and medium retail businesses (goods) in North America are employing to handle the coronavirus crisis in order to understand the current retail business landscape.
To obtain a comparison of brick and mortar only businesses versus omnichannel businesses and to determine the effectiveness of these different strategies.

Early Findings

Impact of COVID-19

  • Private and mid-market businesses have been significantly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • In order to survive this crisis, these businesses should take care of the physical and mental well-being of their staff. These two factors must be at the center of every action taken during this outbreak.
  • Assessing the status of both the supplier and the customer is key in optimizing cash flow. Any business plans should focus on ensuring that loans are well managed and that funding needs are met.
  • Understanding the customer needs at this point will re-define the go-to-market strategy. It is important in determining how to reach markets whose movements are restricted.
  • The government has offered support through various efforts to help businesses and companies stay afloat through this crisis. It is of paramount importance that businesses and companies assess these solutions and identify which ones will help them mitigate this crisis.

Strategies

  • The retail industry is most vulnerable to this crisis, especially those that were established after the great recession in 2008. New businesses are more likely to have debt and may become bankrupt, unless there is an intervention.
  • Additionally, the retail industry is one of the most common job options in the United States. For this reason, the impact on these businesses is sobering as it reveals the fragility of small businesses.
  • In the US, cities and states are deploying interventions in order to combat the impact of this crisis.

Summary of our Early Findings

  • Our initial research was able to provide insights into COVID-19's impact on small and medium retailers. Our one-hour research time was limited and could not address every part of the request. We have presented a thorough breakdown of the next stages of this request below.

Proposed next steps:

You need to be the project owner to select a next step.