7% year-on-year decline predicted for footfall on Boxing Day23 December 2016
Footfall on Boxing Day will decline 7% year-on-year, according to global retail insight provider, ShopperTrak, as consumers make the most of the extra Bank Holiday day and hold off heading into store until the on 27 December.
This, ShopperTrak suggests, is due to the fact that Christmas falls on a Sunday, creating an extra Bank Holiday on Tuesday 27 December, as well as record levels of pre-Christmas discounting by retailers.
Edward Cooke, Chief Executive of Revo, the retail property body, said:
“In line with our predictions, we saw high footfall in the run up to Christmas, and with Christmas Day falling on a Sunday this year, we expect Christmas Bank Holiday shopper numbers to peak on Tuesday 27th.
“Overall shopper numbers for the festive period suggest that a large number of shoppers want to make purchases in person, enjoy all the additional activities that take place in our towns and cities over the festive period and, of course, visit stores to pick up items they’ve ordered online.
“Consumer spending remains resilient post-Brexit and 90% of sales continue to involve a physical shop in some way – with retailers and investors boosting the shopping and leisure experience to attract consumers.”
Steve Richardson, UK & MEA Director at ShopperTrak, commented:
“While Boxing Day is usually a peak day for in-store traffic, this year footfall is set the drop by 7% year-on-year, as consumers make the most of having the extra Bank Holiday off, choosing to spend time with families, travel home or enjoy other leisure activities rather than hitting the High Street.
“There is also another dynamic impacting Boxing Day footfall, namely the unprecedented levels of extended pre-Christmas discounting by retailers, which may have resulted in sales ‘fatigue’ amongst shoppers. While Boxing Day traditionally kicks off the January Sales in earnest, with so much discounting throughout December, this removes the impetus on customers to take to the High Street on Boxing Day itself in order to bag a bargain.”
Footfall is expected to peak on Tuesday 27 December – up 30% on the daily average – as consumers take advantage of the extra day off to day off to seek out any extra bargains, spend Christmas vouchers and even return or exchange unwanted Christmas gifts.