“Got The City on Lockdown” – How Customers Are Shopping In This Blue Era
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“Got The City on Lockdown” – How Customers Are Shopping In This Blue Era

With many of us working from home, aside from our key workers putting in absolutely heroic effort and bravery throughout the country for our fellow people, the rest of us have also been going through a range of emotions.

Fear, panic, confusion, boredom, the list goes on. However, despite everything, we do somehow have to continue with our lives because 1) we know what else we can do, and 2) other aspects life haven’t been put on hold.

We still need essential items, our children still need clothes and entertainment, essential components of our house still need maintaining, and – more than ever – we sometimes just need a distraction from what’s happening in the world.

Therefore, most of us will each look to purchase something in relation to a hobby, fashion or leisurely activity (from the safety of our home or garden).

So, in this time that is simply incomparable with any other period during peacetime, and with the level of technology available for the first time during a pandemic of this nature, what shopping habits and trends are most prevalent online and offline?

Online Shopping Habits and Trends

With Ecommerce and other forms of contactless payments increasing, banks have even upped the cap on contactless card payments in stores to £45.

Whilst some will take full advantage of this in stores whilst also shopping online, others will want to stick to only making payments online entirely.

This has resulted in big boosts to services that provide everyday essentials.

We’ve seen a 156% increase for online card retailer Moonpig, because people still want to send cards with important messages to their family and friends, and (unsurprisingly) we’ve also seen an increase in subscriptions to streaming services Netflix and Spotify. 

Additionally, for local convenience stores that are currently online, there has been a 40% in their online transactions during March.

Interestingly, online purchases generally made up less than a third of daily transactions, but hit 52% on the day that Boris Johnson announced the lockdown of the United Kingdom.

Shopping Habits Across Essex

Offline data has shown us that there has been an 84% decrease in Essex retail footfall, i.e. people personally visiting retail stores, and a 49% decrease in people visiting grocery and pharmaceutical stores within Essex.

However, we know that the demand for these items, particularly groceries and medicine, will still be there, but they will now be looking online instead in order to get these items from the safety of their home and with more peace of mind.

Therefore, the stores with ecommerce functionalities on their websites will be taking the bulk of the transactions away from stores.

Key Offline Statistics

Despite the early surge of panic-buying at supermarkets, data has shown that supermarket transactions are down 40%. However, the avg. order value per customer has seen a 6% increase. Therefore, people are buying more infrequently, but when they do purchase, they are spending more.

The decrease of transactions for big supermarkets are in contrast to local chain stores, which have seen an increase of up to 22% in transactions.

The decision people are making in shopping at smaller and more local shops is likely to be for two major reasons:

  • Some shoppers are wary of venturing to large crowded supermarkets
  • People are choosing to support local businesses in this testing time

The Online Conclusion

By offering and delivering products that people want, via an online business that is local to them, smaller businesses can offer shoppers the opportunity to both avoid crowded supermarkets and support their local businesses.

By doing this, they can be a part of the surge in online transactions we’re seeing in each region.

On behalf of everyone at The Local Marketing Team, we wish you full health, prosperity, and that these times really will hurry up and Fly By.


Blue Fly By CD Single Cover

For any advice on how we can help, please call us on 01255 446117.