Walmart CEO Doug McMillon is predicting that the next spike in consumer buying related to the coronavirus pandemic will involve hair dye and other beauty products. On Friday, McMillon gave an interview to Today in which he discussed the recent surge in necessities like toilet paper and hand sanitizer, and what he thinks consumers will focus on moving forward.
In the interview, he also emphasized that the supply lines for essential goods like soap, hand sanitizer, and toilet paper are all solid, and said that there was no need to panic buy or hoard these items. He also said that, more recently, sales for many of these goods have begun to stabilize.
"Lately we've seen more grooming products," McMillon said.
He explained that as quarantine continues, people are starting to focus more on maintaining beauty standards.
"People are starting to need a haircut, so you start to see more beard trimmers and hair color and things like that. It's interesting to watch the dynamic play out," the CEO continued.
McMillon also said that, because more people are staying home, they need other ways to entertain themselves. As a result, items like toys, puzzles and games have also seen a surge."You can definitely see as people have stayed home, their focus has shifted. It started out with food and consumables and then it moved to things like puzzles and games, things to entertain kids and educate children, as you would guess," McMillon explained.
Even as McMillon discussed some of the purchasing trends around social distancing, he also touched on some of the more serious subjects related to the virus. He said that, while he acknowledged that the pandemic had caused anxiety, he urged people not to stockpile goods that they didn't need immediately.
The CEO said that the goods they're running low on, like toilet paper, are still regularly coming to stores, but the store runs out of them almost immediately.
Even as McMillon has urged the public to be considerate in their purchasing habits, he's also tried to keep the morale of his employees high as they go to work in dangerous circumstances.
In a note to his employees, McMillon thanked them for the work they had put in in recent weeks, and insisted that although the pandemic presented employees with unique challenges, they would get through them. He also said that as the pandemic continues, Walmart employees have come to be seen as valiant and necessary workers.