Abstract: The global COVID-19 pandemic has called for a rapid adaptation of all sectors of the economy to the new reality. The imposed quarantine restrictions have had a dreadful impact on the cultural industry at large, and on museums and galleries. Being forced to close their doors to the visitors for quite a long time, the latter had to develop the online format for their excursions and exhibitions more actively. At the same time, state museums started requiring more financial support from the government (the so called “minimum wage” idea of M. Piotrovskiy). In such circumstances, it is therefore important to adequately assess how to influence on the visitors readiness to the online programs. This study aims to collect and analyze the opinions of the visitors of the St. Petersburg museums on how the pandemic restrictions influenced the activities of the museums in question. Primarily, we questioned the visitors (n = 59) of the Russian State Hermitage on the subject matter.In order to account the small size of the sample, we employ a partial least squares structural equation modeling with accelerated (BCa) version of bootstrapping to identify the influence of the variables to the readiness to online format. As we discuss in this paper by providing an appropriate conceptual theoretical framework, fostering loyalty of the museum audience, it is quite possible to commercialize museum's online content what could be significant support for them during difficult economic situations. However, the value of the online programs has ambiguous nature in comparison with what we previously assumed. Relevant recommendations are provided for Russian museums and galleries.