Apple reopened stores in select U.S. locations and its focus on tech support instead of product sales will impact how it measures store performance.

WHAT HAPPENED: Apple is encouraging customers to shop online, enforcing contactless delivery while using stores for troubleshooting and customer support.

WHY IT MATTERS

Many retailers and mall owners are reopening hastily to recover lost revenue, but Apple is refocusing its stores to better serve customers in the long run. While Apple’s reopened stores are complete with everything that you would expect—from a reduced capacity to temperature checks and employees in masks—the technology giant wants customers to return to its stores for service, not sales. Apple’s ecosystem has always included servicing customers (the Genius Bar was part of its original store design), but this shift represents a change in the way it measures individual store performance. Apple reported a slight increase in revenue for its most recent quarter, with both retail and online sales reaching record highs. Looking at the stores and ecommerce as one unified channel takes the individual stores’ focus off of pushing sales and onto creating loyal customers for life.