Retail footfall down over Easter

Looks like the Easter Bunny wasn't generous with retailers: footfall dropped 1.9%. No amount of chocolate can make up for that...

by Emma Haslett
Last Updated: 21 May 2014

Alright, so you’d never describe this weekend as ‘glorious’ - but it wasn’t bad either. Particularly compared with last Easter, which was one of the coldest on record. But that makes the fact that retail footfall was 1.9% lower than last year all the more galling for retailers…

According to retail data company Springboard, which counts the number of shoppers out and about (rather than retail sales), the biggest growth was in the number of shoppers heading to retail parks - that figure rose 6.1% on last Easter. Sadly, the number on high streets fell 3.5% and those going to shopping centres dropped 5.3%. The good news is that shoppers in coastal towns rose 2.4% - a bit of relief for retailers hit by floods earlier this year.

You could be forgiven for thinking the recovery is a fait accompli, but Springboard marketing and insights director Diane Wehrie said consumers are still keeping their wallets firmly in their pockets.

‘I wouldn’t envisage the recovery in consumer spending is going to be imminent,’ she said. ‘This period of economic uncertainty has gone on for a long time and almost become the norm.’

That’s backed up by figures from the British Retail Consortium, published last week, which showed UK retail sales dropped 1.7% in March. So while the good news stories about the British economy keep on coming, it’s going to take a while to convince shoppers they can start spending again.

Tags:
Economy Retail

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