Maybe people are tired of buying cheap Chinese trinkets. Maybe people have decided that being trampled is not fun. Maybe more and more people are shopping online. The latter is the cashier's theory, and I agree. She explained that Friday morning was not as busy as she and her colleagues at Wal-Mart expected.
Although you won't know the traffic situation in the parking lot at 5:15 in the morning, I parked my car near Cheney Avenue and was happy to find a parking space. I'm not looking for a $10 toaster or a $99 TV. I need some groceries. I forgot to bring my list on Thursday morning, nor did I buy the garbage bags and distilled water I needed. I bought these things today, along with some potato salad, bread rolls and cat food.
Wal-Mart’s grocery store is open. You could have fired on the cheese and meat aisles without hitting anyone. As I approached the pet area, I noticed that the other end of the store was very busy. Many people stuffed their trolleys with very large boxes. They didn't seem to be in a hurry, and most of the people I met were not in a hurry.
At the checkout, I saw something that I rarely saw. On most weekend mornings, there is only one checkout clerk on duty, and most customers are doing self-service. All the manual checkout counters are open, but the clerk just stands politely and waits for the business.
When it comes to online shopping items, Wal-Mart is increasingly emerging on Amazon. In the past 15 years, I have also discovered that the turnaround time for the products I ordered through the computer is only one day! My clerk explained that this is because the product is usually already in the store or can be shipped from a neighboring store.
The day when most online shopping and profit margins increase will come, and even many successful physical stores will close. Now, I really like talking to the friendly staff in the morning.