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Local spend increases while high street footfall declines

By Andrea Byrne

16 Sep 2020

Rakuten Advertising, performance marketing, media and consumer insights researcher, has completed a survey concerning consumers’ opinion towards returning to the high street and gift shopping.

Local businesses experience surge in popularity

Almost half of UK consumers intend to shop from domestic brands (43 percent), and since the start of the pandemic, 55 percent of British households plan to increase their spend with local businesses.

One in ten British consumers have increased their purchases from local businesses due to the coronavirus.

Physical and online shopping

51 percent of British consumers have indicated the want to shop both in-store and online, as social distancing guidelines are still in place, 36 percent said they are more likely to choose the click and collect option.

High street shopping does not seem to be a popular choice among shoppers, as only 21 percent said they will go for gift shopping this year. While 32 percent of shoppers are willing to leave physical stores this year to remain safe and avoid large crowds.

Anthony Capano, international managing director at Rakuten Advertising, said in a statement: “Consumers have indicated a desire to combine visiting the high street with shopping online this year, meaning connecting the online and offline experience will be key for the success of retailers."

Marketplaces dominate influence

Amazon is a major source of gift inspiration for consumers as 48 percent use this during peak shopping, and their product reviews are influential for 28 percent of consumers.

Capano commented: “The success of marketplaces can be put down to accessibility, curation, community and efficiency. Consumers are using marketplaces as a way to search and locate what they need instantly and conveniently. For retailers to be successful they need to drive consumers to their own e-commerce environment, and retailers can leverage many of the marketplace aspects to do this via their publisher partners."

The influence of social media

Social media recommendations have come second to marketplace buying this year with Facebook being the most dominant at 38 percent, followed by Whatsapp at 35 percent, Instagram at 31 percent and YouTube at 27 percent.

Capano concluded: “We expect the majority of online purchases to take place on mobile this holiday season, and social media remains an important place for brands to reach consumers. Investing in low-risk upper funnel strategies, with platforms that align with they own brand values, is an effective way for brands to reach and engage consumers with relevant and timely ads.

This research was conducted among 8,673 adults globally.

Photo credit: Hotwire Global