Footfall rises in June as shops reopen

UK footfall decreased by 62.6 per cent year-on-year in June, as lockdown restrictions continued to ease, with a 19 percentage point improvement from May.

The latest British Retail Consortium (BRC) and ShopperTrak figures showed that in the first two weeks the footfall decline averaged 77.1 per cent, improving to 53.3 per cent in the remaining three weeks, once all stores were allowed to open in England and Northern Ireland.

Footfall on High Streets declined by 64.5 per cent year-on-year. In the final three weeks, the average decline was 58.4 per cent, shallower than the 74.5 per cent decline seen in the first two weeks of the month.

Retail parks saw footfall decrease by 33.8 per cent year-on-year. The average decline in the first two weeks was 45.1 per cent, easing to 26.3 per cent in the remaining three weeks.

Shopping centre footfall declined by 68.3 per cent year-on-year. The footfall average decline in the first two weeks was 81.4 per cent, improving to 59.6 per cent in the remaining three weeks.

The decline in footfall was largest in Scotland - which only reopened in the final week of June - at 78.5 per cent. Northern Ireland, which reopened first - on 12 June - saw the shallowest decline of 56.9 per cent.

BRC chief executive Helen Dickinson commented: “Retail parks have performed the best because they have a broad mix of retailers, more space and on-site parking, however, high streets and shopping centres are quickly catching up.

“UK recovery has been sluggish, especially compared with European standards, but retailers with stores remain hopeful that the reopening of hospitality will provide a welcome boost.”

Andy Sumpter, EMEA retail consultant at ShopperTrak, added: “The most effective retailers are using footfall data to allow customers to know the best time to visit to avoid queues.

“As customers begin to get used to new shopping practices, retailers will be working hard to ensure they have the right number of staff available at the right times.”

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