Black Friday footfall forecast to rise 12.8% on last year - Springboard
Black Friday’s going to be fairly good for retailers. Better than last year, but not quite up to pre-pandemic 2019 levels, predicts footfall tracking specialist Springboard.
Growing concerns over rising inflation rates and Christmas supply chain issues will be the main drivers of Black Friday footfall this year, expected to be 12.8% higher than a year ago. However, that’s still 7.8% down on 2019.
Despite stretched resources, consumers will also want to make the most of the festive shopping experience, which was lost during the Covid years, the retail intelligence expert believes. “Additionally, the attraction of shopping in physical retail spaces far outweighs online this Christmas, due to the rise in postage charges and the cost of returns”, it added.
Despite this Black Friday’s footfall gains on a year ago, consumer visits to high streets will be down 9.5% on 2019, and shopping centres will be 12.1% lower, but retail parks will be up marginally.
The report said UK shopping centres that are set to benefit most from Black Friday with footfall set to be up 16.3% year-on-year. “Shopping centres are particularly attractive over Black Friday as their retailers tend to actively participate in the annual discounts event “that consumers will be looking to make the most of” Springboard added.
Year-on-year footfall increases at shopping centres will be followed closely by high streets (+13.2%) and retail parks at (+8.5%).
Last year, footfall in high streets on Black Friday declined from the week before by 0.3% versus rises of +17.3% in shopping centres and +11.8% in retail parks. “However, this was likely to have been an anomaly of Covid when shoppers were cautious about visiting congested town centres in contrast to the perceived greater safety of larger managed spaces of shopping centres and retail parks”, the report said.
In every year prior to Covid, footfall in high streets rose by more than 10% on Black Friday averaging +19.9% between 2014 and 2019 and peaking at +29.3% in 2014, +21.3% in 2016 and +25% in 2019. By contrast, the week-on-week increase in footfall in shopping centres on Black Friday over the equivalent six-year period averaged +25.2% and +18.4% in retail parks.
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