In this episode of Retail Right Now, Total Retail's Melissa Campanelli and Kristina Stidham discuss the trend of retailers closing their stores on Thanksgiving Day in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Walmart first announced nationwide closures last week, and others are starting to follow suit. The list now includes Walmart, Target, Dick's Sporting Goods, Kohl's, and Best Buy. Most companies are saying they're doing this to show appreciation for their store associates who are working during COVID, as well as to prevent big crowds that day to limit the spread of the virus.

As we progress into the holiday planning season, retailers are having to carefully navigate a global health crisis, keeping employees and shoppers both safe and satisfied. Major retailers are making a variety of changes to ensure a successful holiday shopping season, such as running holiday deals earlier in the year both in-store and online in an effort to prevent store crowding, enhancing the e-commerce experience in anticipation of increased online traffic, and offering employees a pandemic pay premium or bonuses.

No one knows what holiday 2020 will bring, as some consumers are still sticking to online shopping while others are rushing to get back to stores. We’ll be watching for more news around this as we get closer to the holiday season, so be sure to check back at for further coverage.

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