FERNDALE, Mich. – Retailers are heading into what’s typically the best time of the year, but the pandemic is causing all kinds of challenges.
One Metro Detroit store decided to put safety first and the response from customers has been more than they ever imagined.
Local businesses have had to make some tough decisions over the last few months, but one Ferndale store made the choice to close and customers are rewarding them for it.
Emily and John Murray opened Modern Natural Baby on Nine Mile Road in 2009 after having a baby of their own. Each year, they gained more business until March when the pandemic hit
“I mean this store supports our family and we didn’t know if we would survive the first shutdown,” Emily Murray said.
Their store was able to survive thanks to the loyal customers who shopped online and through social media.
“We started doing live videos every day that we were in the store,” Emily Murray said. “Packing orders just to show people what they could buy.”
“They always do fun things and you never know, they do giveaways and there’s always something that they announce,” said Kristen Lawrence, a customer.
John Murray said they’ve been getting orders from customers that don’t have children or grandchildren because they want to support the store.
“They just know there’s a personal touch here,” said Johnny Lawrence, a customer.
Now with their busy season approaching, a three-week shutdown was put in place. John and Emily Murray carefully listened to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ warnings and made the tough decision to close.
They switched to doing two live videos every day to showcase as much as they could and it paid off.
Wednesday was the best day the store has had in its 11 years of business.
Modern Natural Baby is continuing to thrive while voluntarily shutting down to keep people safe during this pandemic.
Emily and John Murray said they find it hard to articulate how grateful for those that shop small businesses like theirs and the community’s response has been amazing.
Downtown Ferndale was quiet on the night before Thanksgiving.
Normally, Nine Mile Road would be flooded with people going from bar to bar and fighting for parking spots. With the current three-week restriction on bars and restaurants, things were low key.
“It doesn’t feel like the day before Thanksgiving,” said Brandon Leclerc of Sterling Heights.