Forty percent of consumers tell First Insight that they will shop for apparel in-store either less or the same amount after being vaccinated.
Even when we’re all vaccinated, the retail sector will still face challenges.
Need proof? Look at the recent survey by First Insight
Forty percent of consumers told the company that they will shop for apparel in-store either less or the same amount after being vaccinated.
The survey also found that people are queasier about shopping since the holidays because they feel less safe now when trying on and testing products in-store. Seventy-one percent of respondents feel unsafe testing beauty products versus 67% in November of 2020. In addition, 62% felt unsafe trying on products in a dressing room versus 55% in November. While only 51% felt unsafe working with a sales associate before the holidays, now 59% feel unsafe.
Not surprisingly, the number of people who say COVID-19 is impacting their buying decisions is also increasing. In February 2020, before the lockdowns began in full, 44% of respondents felt that the pandemic affected their purchase decisions. In January 2021, that jumped to 76%
The pandemic is also causing 69% more people to cut back on spending. In February 2020, 35% of respondents cut back on spending because of COVID. In January 2021, that jumped to 59%
The sentiment that retail will continue to struggle after the pandemic, however, isn’t universal. Placer.ai, for instance, has become bullish about the mall sector’s future potential, even in the near term.
After analyzing more than two dozen top tier malls across the country, Placer.ai saw a strong start to 2020 for the sector as a whole. After bringing visits within 30% of 2019 numbers by October, the resurgence of COVID cases caused the visit gap to balloon to 42.2% in November.
However, December showed both the resilience of consumer demand and the power of malls, according to Placer.ai. Visits were only down 32.4% from December 2019, which was an exceptionally strong month for the segment. That was only a slight decrease from behind the mark set in October.
Given the immediate nature of the post-Black Friday recovery, the strength in early 2020 and the height reached in 2020 amid the pandemic, Placer.ai thinks 2021 could be much kinder to indoor malls than many expect.
Source: “Can the Vaccine Save Retail? One Survey Cast Doubts“