SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Retail businesses in San Francisco have the green light to begin curbside sales and pickups starting Monday, but that’s still leaving many owners wondering how it will impact their business overall.
Petra Bergstein, owner of The Caviar Company, has been packing up orders and delivering packages of high-end caviar.
“They can call us ahead of time and we can just run it right down,” said Bergstein. We’ve done it before COVID-19. We put it on ice and it’s ready to go, so we’re ready.”
A strong established presence online and an Instagram following of more than 10,000 have kept her business moving in the right direction, even before curbside sales kick-off.
“We’re really excited about it,” Bergstein said “We think it will help us.”
Many business owners say having a list of popular items clearly priced online, and presenting customers exactly what they’re getting before a scheduled pickup are key.
Nearby, SuiGeneris, a woman’s clothing consignment store, doesn’t have the same business model.
“I’m used to helping people when they come in. What size would work for them so I’m curious how this will play out for us,” said Jitka Valkova, manager at SuiGeneris Designer Consignment.
Door after door with “Closed” signs and no indication of even partial re-openings dominate. The North Face store, which opened last year in Cow Hollow announced its closing permanently.
There will be no pickups at Sur La Table, the popular kitchenware store on Union Street either. The Williams Sonoma location on Chestnut street is shutting its doors for good.
But two blocks down, Photograph and Frame in the Marina just brought back workers this week after cutting half its staff in Mid-March.
“It will be good to have people pick up things on monday and we do have ready-made options available which will be a positive,” said Ilysa Austin of Photograph & Frame.
The gradual re-openings begin for other counties like Alameda, Contra Costa, and San Mateo early next week, barring any significant spikes in new cases of COVID-19 and hospitalizations.
The only Bay Area county not allowing curbside sales will be Santa Clara County.