Brexit Concerns, Weather And Major Sporting Events Impacts Retail Footfall

Retail footfall in June was 2.8% down on a year ago, worse than the 0.3% rise in May and the sharpest decline since February 2014, according to figures released today by the British Retail Consortium and Springboard.

High Streets reported a 3.7% fall in footfall in June, followed by shopping centres, which recorded a 2.3% decline. Footfall in Retail Parks fell 1.0% after rising 1.0% in May, its worst performance since November 2013.

“The results are shaped by a political and economic storm against a backdrop of rain downpours and generally inclement weather throughout the whole month,” said Diane Wehrle, Marketing and Insights Director at Springboard.

She said that footfall deteriorated from a 0.4% rise in the first week of June to a 4.6% drop during the week of the referendum and a 3.4% drop in the weeks following, as consumer confidence took a hit from the unexpected result. Wehrle added: “The issue for retailers is how quickly shoppers will return to their usual patterns of behaviour.”

Meanwhile, BRC Chief Executive Helen Dickinson suggested that the EU referendum was only one factor keeping some shoppers away. She said: “Despite today’s figures showing the deepest decline in footfall since February 2014, the same period has seen UK retail sales rise. June has seen many distractions from Euro 2016 to Wimbledon so heading out to the shops seems to have slipped down the priority list for many. In the coming months we all must redouble our efforts to remind customers that now is a great time to get out into their local communities.”

NAM Implications:
  • Makes a change for Brexit to share some of the blame for sales shortfalls…
  • Meanwhile, Brexit should be seen as an opportunity to conduct a fundamental re-assessment of consumer needs, and working back from there…
  • See KamBlog when a moment…