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Springboard data shows significant decline in Boxing Day footfall

Springboard’s latest retail footfall data has revealed a decline of -75.9% in Tier 4 areas on Boxing Day.

Tier 2 and 3 areas – in which non-essential retail stores are allowed to open – experienced respective declines of -33.1% and -38.5%, highlighting a UK-wide trend trend for staying away from the shops.

Diane Wehrle, Springboard insights director, said: 

“The introduction of Tier 4 restrictions in London, large parts of the South East and Wales on Sunday 20th December – in what should have been the peak trading week of the year – had a significant impact on footfall across UK retail destinations last week.

“Inevitably the most severe drops in England occurred in Greater London and the South East, however, the decline in footfall in Wales was of a similar magnitude to that in London.

“The outcome of the restrictions has been that the annual decline in footfall worsened considerably last week across all three destination types, but most severely in high streets and shopping centres as retail parks were buoyed to some degree by the presence of food stores.”

Overall, Boxing Day footfall decline was down by -60% across the UK.

Retail parks experienced a -45% decline; high streets saw a -63.3% decline in shopper numbers, while shopping centres were worst affected with -65.4% fewer shoppers.

Wehrle added: “Boxing Day has been attracting less retail footfall each year in five of the past seven years, as shoppers turn online to grab the best bargains. Interestingly, Boxing Day has been evolving into more of a leisure-based day, with shoppers starting their trips later on in the day, and combining shopping trips with eating out and catching up with family and friends. The closure of hospitality in the Tier 3 and above means shoppers have remained at home and footfall has declined significantly.

“We undoubtedly expected a drop in footfall due to the closure of non-essential retail in Tier 4, however it is evident that the repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic are continuing to make retail destinations less attractive across Tier 2 and Tier 3 as well. This year, after spending so much time online, consumers are now experts at online shopping, whereby they know they can enjoy the same discounts, from the comfort and safety of their own home.”

Source : Insight DIY & Springboard

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