Stores can reopen from May 3, but there will still be a 25 percent capacity restriction imposed. While sales volumes have dropped during the ongoing period of restrictions, companies confirm that there is not much unsold stock and consumers should not expect any great discount sales.
With all stores, besides essential service providers, having been closed since the start of March, restrictions have affected stores significantly. Anne-Liis Ostov, the manager of nearly 30 shoe stores, told ETV's daily affairs show "Aktuaalne kaamera" that while e-stores were operational, it does not come close to regular sales.
"E-stores operate in all stores but it only provides work for three stores where order assembly is conducted. Speaking on fashion trade, the shoe is a critical thing that people still find hard to purchase from e-stores. The need for a client to come to the store still exists," Ostov noted.
Restrictions have caused the shoe store to miss out on two spring seasons of sales, Ostov said.
Compared to last year, construction stores have also been closed this year. "We directed clients to the e-store and drive-in once restrictions were imposed. Obviously, it does not compensate the sales of regular shops, turnover dropped some 30 percent," said Ehituse ABC sales and marketing director Margo Pruunlep.
The spring season tends to be a boom for bicycle sales as well. Since spring this year came later, bicycle shops did not endure too much a drop in sales and e-stores made up for most of the losses.
"The lives of our logistics will be simpler because most people in Estonia order bicycles in boxes, which means that the burden on logistics jumped significantly and dropped a little for salesmen," Velomarket.ee store manager Edit Kauts said.
After restrictions were eased last year, visitation numbers to stores increased but capacity and distancing regulations were still followed, Anne-Liis Ostov said. Margo Pruunlep added that construction store customers will largely be made up gardening enthusiasts in May.
Ostov said that there is not much stock left unsold due to restrictions and people should not expect large discount sales. "I personally think there will not be too many deep discounts in May. The spring season will wrap up in July-August, as usual, prices will be cheap then," the shoe store manager said.
Pruunlep said construction stores will also not offer large discounts as goods have recently become more expensive due to the scarcity of products.
"What is likely to happen in May instead is that everyone will try to make themselves more visible and this might mean an oversupply of offers. Products tend to run out as manufacturers and suppliers cannot supply as much. I don't know if there will be a lack of products, but we can see a price hike and deficit, when it comes to some products," Pruunlep said.
Editor: Kristjan Kallaste