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Footfall set to shift towards high streets?

Cookshops and housewares stockists that are situated in town centres could benefit from a shift in consumer behaviour when UK stores begin to open from the beginning of June (at the earliest). Data analyst company GlobalData says that more consumers are more willing to visit town centres as opposed to other shopping destinations.

Nearly 11% of consumers say they intend to visit high streets, town centres or in-town shopping centres more than previously after UK lockdown, with another nearly 73% saying they would visit on a similar level to pre-lockdown.

Sofie Willmott, lead analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Local town centres in particular will be better protected. Consumers, many of whom are likely to be working from home for a prolonged period of time, will prefer to make a short journey to their nearby high street (by driving or walking) rather than travelling unnecessarily to reach a shopping destination, like a supermall or a city centre that they may have previously visited due to the proximity to their workplace.”

The data company also highlights that many consumers want to support small local independent businesses with a sense of community being amplified for many during the pandemic.

Sofie adds: “The hardest hit major location will be out of town shopping centres and supermalls as consumers will be put off by the large number of people that could potentially be visiting at the same time and the difficulty of sticking to social distancing.”

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