Pittsburgh shoe store reinventing itself during COVID-19 pandemic

PITTSBURGH — A Pittsburgh shoe store has reinvented the way it sells shoes during the coronavirus pandemic, and the owner is looking ahead to how the store can be reinvented again when it can reopen.

Little’s Shoes has nearly 100 years of family history. This is the first time shoes haven’t been able to be sold in person. They’ve instead been sold to people who call in or buy them on social media.

“We do rely on all that foot traffic, so it is obviously not close to as busy as the norm, but at the same time, it has been better than nothing,” owner Justin Sigal said.

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Sigal is now thinking about how to protect his employees and customers when the day comes to open back up.

Many of Sigal’s employees have worked there his whole life, and he hopes to be able to bring back all 20 he’s had to furlough.

When the store reopens, Sigal said he will have masks and gloves for his employees and customers. He was able to get help from the Paycheck Protection Program.

“We’ve already started to gather those products to make sure, whether it’s in the rule or just for someone to be comfortable mentally to come shop here,” Sigal said.