Boutiques in downtown Sarasota are feeling the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak—and finding creative methods to serve clientele. T. Georgiano's, on First Street, is offering curbside pickup for customers who have ordered clothing online. The boutique's fully operational online store has all the same styles and brands that the physical location offers. All customers have to do is call the store and select a pick-up option. Employees will then meet them curbside, just like a to-go restaurant service, or run orders across the street to valet parking. The store is also offering virtual styling sessions over video chat, if desired.
"Customers have a week to try on clothes and make exchanges or receive store credit," says owner Tatyana Sharoubim.
Sharoubim is also still offering in-person shopping—cautiously. "Our physical location is still open, and we are taking precautions and cleaning frequently," she says.
Sharoubim admits that the store has seen a dip in customers during what is usually the peak season, and encourages people to think about buying gift cards for use later, too. "Small businesses need people's support right now," she says.