Watch webinar highlights below

How has bricks and mortar retail performed since the reopening of indoor dining and over the period since the delay in the lifting of Covid restrictions was announced?

We were joined by some exciting industry guests on Wednesday 28th July who shared the trends they have seen so far, and their expectations following the ending of restrictions. Springboard’s Marketing & Insights Director, Diane Wehrle, took a closer look at footfall and market trends following the reopening of non-essential retail on 12th April, the opening of indoor dining on 17th May, as well as early insights on the performance of retail stores and destinations following the removal of all restrictions on 19th July.

The session closed with many questions raised which we’ve answered in a Q&A below.

Are these national trends replicated regionally?

We have seen differences in footfall trends from region to region, particularly from nation to nation as the dates of easing of restrictions varied. Regional data is available in Springboard’s Weekly and Monthly Pro reports.

Do you have info on the % drop in footfall across the country if London is taken out of the equation? I assume the 55% drop in central London must skew the overall data somewhat.

We calculate our benchmarks based on volume so locations with higher volumes will have a greater weighting in the overall result but this in fact reflects the weight of spend across the UK retail landscape. We recognise that London can distort certain benchmarks such as the regional cities benchmark. We therefore have a benchmark for regional cities excluding London, and track this continuously, and the gap in footfall from 2019 for regional cities excluding London is smaller.

Can we get further breakdown of types of retail parks? Do retail parks with outdoor/DIY retailers win vs clothing heavy Retail parks?

We do segment UK retail parks into two categories splitting retail parks into those that predominantly comprise homeware/bulky goods and those that are mainly occupied by high street retailers – we regard these as Shopping Parks. Results for these two benchmark splits are available in our Weekly and Monthly Pro Reports or in a data feed.

Are traditional footfall numbers as relevant a metric as they have been historically. The vast majority of Stores in our Centre are reporting significant drops in store footfall, but huge increases in conversion volume and ATV

Footfall is even more relevant today than before Covid due to the significant shifts in footfall that have taken place since the start of the pandemic and our lack of knowledge of how consumers respond to changes in restrictions and changes in the infection rate. We know there is a 78% correlation between store sales and footfall demonstrating its significance to retailers, and we also know that whilst online spending is at a record high, the vast majority of spending is still in store rather than online.

With the recent news announcement that US and EU travellers can enter UK without quarantine if fully jabbed, do you think this will positively impact London and more importantly Central/West End?

The changes in the quarantine regulations for visitors coming from overseas will undoubtedly help London’s footfall as the capital is the location that the vast majority of overseas tourists head to. We have already seen a steady improvement in footfall in Central London and this is likely to strengthen further, as confidence amongst visitors from overseas increases.

Watch the full recording here.