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Published
Jun 15, 2020
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Peak time avoidance is top safety action for shoppers - survey

Published
Jun 15, 2020

In the deluge of reports coming out about how shoppers feel as non-essential stores reopen on Monday, it's become very clear that there’s a lot of uncertainty about whether physical shopping is safe or not.


Shoppers will try to avoid visiting shopping locations at peak times - Festival Place



And because of this, it's unclear just how strong the sentiment will be for newly reopened shops this week. What is clear though is that there is unlikely to be a rush the second they open their doors. And a new study from buy-now-pay-later specialist Laybuy has shown that the top tactic UK consumers will be using to stay safe is to avoid shopping during peak times.

The company spoke to 2,000 people for its survey and 46% of them said off-peak shopping would be their strategy. Meanwhile, 40% said they’d be using contactless payments only for purchases. This would mean them neither having to have physical contact with shop staff as they hand cash over nor having to touch payment machines to key in their PIN number.

Another major safety action that consumers will be taking is spending less time shopping altogether and this could be a real problem for stores as it’s bound to suppress sales. Not only that, the casual browsing that often converts into a transaction is less likely to happen. Doing less window shopping and browsing was a tactic cited by 22% of respondents.

It's interesting that, with all the stores who shared their reopening strategies emphasising the provision of hand sanitiser, only 36% of people will be taking their own sanitiser with them. This is more likely to be a reaction to the widespread belief that there will be hand sanitiser a-plenty in every shopping area rather than a belief that using such a product isn't important.

That said, only 34% of people say that wearing a mask is one of their priorities. Again, this could be a reaction to the fact that store safety measures will be quite robust with consumers perhaps feeling confident that screens at tills and social distancing will be enough.

And although it may seem that there’s a marked lack of enthusiasm among some consumers for the big reopenings, there's also a sense of excitement among a big minority. While some 42% of shoppers are unsure how they feel about returning to the high street and 38% are nervous, 20% said that they were excited by the prospect.

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