Despite the COVID-19 pandemic and a tough year economically, the National Retail Federation expects holiday sales to be up in 2020 and Black Friday will look different in a COVID-19 era.
Traditional Black Friday hot spot, Best Buy, has gotten innovated to make sure in-person shoppers remain safe.
“Contactless curbside pickup is something new that we rolled out in this pandemic to make it safer for customers to get their products,” Best Buy representative Matthew Smith said.
It is expected that popular Black Friday items will include electronics that allow customers to learn and work more efficiently from home.
Best Buy has also created a new role of Customer Experience Host.
“We think it is going to offer our customers an easy shopping experience. When you enter the store, that customer experience host will greet you right away and depending on what you need help with,” Smith said. “If you want to talk to an Apple product expert, they can add you to a digital queue. You can wait in your vehicle or a safe space in the store with fewer customers.”
“That Customer Experience Host will also manage any lines outside the store on Black Friday when we open at 5 a.m. and there are more people wanting to come into the store than we have room for,” Smith added.
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The digital queue system is also a new Black Friday strategy for the store.
“If you prefer to not wait in the store, you can be added to a digital queue that allows you to wait in your car,” Smith said. “That way you don’t have to be in the store unnecessarily. When it is time for you to get in the store, you’ll get a notification and an expert will greet you and help you.”
Masks are required in all stores for employees and customers.