Retailers show essential workers their appreciation with promotional perks
Gift giving during the novel coronavirus pandemic could drive the heaviest season for package delivery in history and Krispy Kreme is showing appreciation to the people who will be working to make it happen.
Krispy Kreme is offering a free dozen glazed doughnuts to any mail carrier or package delivery driver on November 30, according to Today. Workers will need only to show their badges to be eligible for the doughnuts. This is not the first free doughnut promotion that Krispy Kreme has run this year; one week in August, for the first time, the chain offered a free doughnut and coffee to educators and school administrators.
Delivery workers and mail carriers have been designated “essential workers” during periods when stay-at-home-orders were implemented to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus.
While the latter part of the 2010s saw a huge increase in e-commerce during holiday seasons, sometimes strained delivery companies, the unique circumstances of the pandemic are forecast to motivate even more people to shop for gifts online. This unusually heavy seasonal uptick will come on top of a significant increase in consumers shopping online for groceries and other everyday items.
Amazon.com, for one, is expecting record online shopping and an associated logistics crunch as customers, wary about visiting crowded places, opt to order gifts and have them delivered rather than purchasing in-store, CNBC reports. The e-tail giant has gone as far as to recommend customers pick up orders at contactless pickup points during the season rather than having them delivered to their homes. Holiday e-commerce sales are expected to be up 33 percent from last year, to the tune of a record $189 billion.
Krispy Kreme’s move comes as individuals and institutions continue to look for ways to show appreciation for essential workers. In March, many major retailers rolled out hazard pay and “hero bonuses” for those working in often low-wage positions rendered dangerous by the potential presence of the virus.
Some retailers began discontinuing such benefits by May or June, though, and the New York Times recently reported that essential workers are not receiving the bonuses they once did, even as a new round of lockdowns looms.
- Special delivery! Krispy Kreme is giving away doughnuts to mail and package carriers – Today
- Amazon pushes holiday shoppers to pick up packages at stores amid potential delivery crunch – CNBC
- Virus Cases Rise, but Hazard Pay for Retail Workers Doesn’t – New York Times
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you think more promotions like Krispy Kreme’s should be aimed at delivery workers, mailer carriers, etc., year round? What about similar promotions and discounts for essential store staff? How should retailers pursue these promotions, and do you think they build goodwill with and loyalty from the public?