Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Walmart Limiting Number of Customers Allowed in Store at One Time

By Rich Duprey - Apr 6, 2020 at 11:17AM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

It's another measure the retailer is implementing to ensure social distancing in its stores.

Walmart (WMT 0.86%) saw a massive spike in traffic and sales since the coronavirus pandemic began, marking a 20% surge in sales in March and a 30% increase since February. Now, it's limiting the number of people it will allow into its stores.

The retailer said no more than five customers per 1,000 square feet of floor space will be let into a store at a given time and employees will only let them in one at a time. The limits represent about 20% of a store's capacity.

Walmart store sign

Image source: Walmart.

A broad-based approach

President Trump and administration officials warn we're heading into the worst week or so of the crisis, and his head of the coronavirus response has warned consumers to stay away from supermarkets and pharmacies. Instead, they should remain at home.

That may create a new surge of panic buying before consumers hunker down, but the limitations on the number of customers allowed into a store could minimize that. 

The retail giant, with almost 4,800 stores in the U.S., has taken several actions in recent weeks to help limit the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, and to ensure there is plenty of food and merchandise available for the largest number of consumers.

It has limited store hours to allow for increased restocking and sanitation while also creating opportunities for shoppers over 60 to shop with less risk. It is also taking the temperature of its employees as they report for work and is providing them gloves and masks. It has also considered introducing one-way aisles to help promote social distancing.

It is now also going to hire third-party cleaning crews to sanitize high-touch areas after two employees died of COVID-19 at one of its stores.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Stock Quote
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
WMT
$122.63 (0.86%) $1.05

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
316%
 
S&P 500 Returns
112%

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 07/03/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.