In Colorado, where vape stores were deemed non-essential businesses, the vaping industry is struggling. Manufacturer Jvapes E-liquid, has had to lay off staff due to the closures of two stores in the state. On the other hand, the chain also has stores in Arizona and Oklahoma which have remained open.
In states were convenience stores were deemed essential, vape stores added some stock and reclassified themselves as such, while in other states vape manufacturers started producing hand sanitizer and other sanitary-related products.
To make up for the closed stores, the company is doing its utmost to bump up online sales. Despite this, the company’s sales are down by 30%. “I do believe my business will get through this time,” owner Amanda Wheeler told ECigIntelligence. “However, I suspect that a large number of vapour businesses will not be able to financially recover from this prolonged closure.”
In South Carolina, vape shops did not originally fall into the category of essential businesses outlined by the state. However, together with thousands of car dealerships, cleaning companies and other businesses, multiple vape businesses won approval from the state’s Department of Commerce to keep their doors open.
In the state of Washington, some vape stores have managed to stay open by reclassifying themselves as convenience stores, which have been deemed essential. “We’ve always sold Red Bull as a convenience to the customer,” revealed a vape shop owner. “So we went out and got some snacks and we’re a convenience store.”
While retailers and manufacturers in other states, have started producing hand sanitiser and other sanitary-related products. Georgia-based VR Labs has begun marketing a 60 ml bottle of aloe vera hand sanitiser and promises to donate one bottle for every two it sells. Between the 27th March and the 5th April, the firm donated a total of 850 bottles.
How the UK industry remodeled itself
In the UK, vape shops have been deemed non-essential and forced to close across the country. To this effect, many small independent vape businesses were fearing their demise, whilst their customers were concerned about being able to obtain their smoking cessation aids.
In order to survive, most specialist online vape stores, hybrid online and offline retailers and bricks and mortar shops, have remodelled their retail operations to offer home-deliveries. Retailers have added to their warehouse space, increased the size of their customer service teams and set up online and telephone-based advice channels for vapers and smokers.
Naturally, online retailers have experienced a considerable increase in demand. One such retailer, Vape Club, has reported a 150-200% increase in business. “Normally, when we experience larger order volumes than normal such as at Christmas, we would increase staffing levels to cope. However, this hasn’t been possible due to the circumstances and instead we’ve extended shift times and added ones at the weekend,” said Managing Director Dan Marchant.
Read Further: ECigIntelligence
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