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Retail Foot Traffic In The U.K. Down To Less Than Half

Retail Foot Traffic In The U.K. Down To Less Than Half

Retail Foot Traffic In The U.K. Down To Less Than Half

Retail foot traffic in the U.K. dropped by more than half last month compared to last year, with consumers continuing to hunker down even as non-essential brick and mortar stores began reopening on June 15.

While the reopening of non-essential stores was initially seen as a turning point by retail pundits with a 40 percent increase in foot traffic compared to the previous week, it considerably slowed down in the following two weeks. Issues surrounding long queues, and a restricted shopping experience contributed to that decline in foot traffic, according to Diane Wehrle, insights director at Springboard. 

The impact was particularly noticeable on the main street, which is heavily reliant on flow of shoppers, tourists and residents for securing business. Main street foot traffic declined by 65.1 percent, declining by 80.8 percent compared to the same time period last year. Retail parks and shopping centers, on the other hand, did much better with foot traffic only declining by 62.3 percent. 

“The fact that much of the workforce continues to work from home, tourists and many students are absent, as well as the Government urging consumers to only use public transport for essential travel, means that footfall and therefore sales, will continue to be compromised in these retail destinations.”

That said, the numbers still point toward green shoots in the retail space as the foot traffic has improved from a 73.3 percent year-on-year decline observed in May.

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