The BRC and Opinium have been working together to track consumer behaviours and their sentiment towards coronavirus. This research has run weekly since the pandemic began, with this wave of responses taking place between 12-15 June 2020.
- Respondents feeling comfortable about making purchases in-store rose to 63% for groceries (20% uncomfortable) and 41% for non-groceries* (17% uncomfortable). This is up from 51% for groceries and 25% for non-groceries at the start of the May.
- Visits to larger supermarkets rose from 59% (start of May) to 66%, small supermarkets from 35% to 50% and to DIY stores from 19% to 29%.
- Immediately prior to stores opening, 13% of respondents intended to visit shops to browse or purchase, while 44% only intended to visit the shops if necessary.
- The most popular safety measures in stores were regular cleaning (34%), compulsory hand sanitising (33%) and one-way systems (30%)
- On the wearing of masks, 44% of respondents currently wear them, with a further 26% intending to wear them in stores in the future. This compared to 36% and 31%, respectively, the previous week.
Helen Dickinson OBE, Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium, said:
“Coronavirus is fundamentally changing our experience of shopping. Consumers and retailers are adapting to this new normal; the public are making their own judgements about how to stay safe and retailers have made significant investment in safety measures in stores. This has helped more and more people feel comfortable to go out and visit their local high street.
“Ultimately the future of thousands of shops and millions of jobs depend on the public’s decision to go out and support shops across the country. Retailers have spent millions of pounds making stores safe for customers and it is essential that the initial burst of enthusiasm seen on the high streets this week continues in the months ahead. It will continue to be a difficult time for retail, but with the support of the public and Government, the UK’s largest private sector employer will continue to play a vital part in all our lives.”