Footfall set for big Easter boost as consumers bide their time
Expect this year’s long Easter weekend to be strong for UK retail. That’s the forecast from MRI Springboard, which thinks shoppers are “holding back in anticipation”.
The data company expects a much-needed 5.1% week-on-week boost to footfall across all UK retail destinations during the key three days of Easter weekend trading (7-9 April).
The gap from the pre-pandemic footfall is also forecast to disappear, with a marginal rise of +0.1% from Easter 2019.
Good Friday is expected to have the largest week-on-week rise of 10.3% across all UK retail destinations and up 15% on high streets alone. And the forecast comes as a boost to retail, following Easter 2022 when footfall declined 0.1%.
Over the upcoming Easter weekend as a whole, MRI Springboard is expecting the biggest rises in footfall to occur in UK high streets (+6.6%) as many towns feature Easter events designed to attract shoppers, and in UK retail parks (+5.1%) as shoppers use the weekend for home and garden improvements. A more modest rise in footfall of +2.5% from the previous week is forecast in UK shopping centres.
MRI Springboard bases its prediction on signs consumers are holding out for Easter as footfall over the last three weeks has been flat, with a -0.1% week-on-week drop. Last week, footfall dropped 2.6% across all UK retail destinations from the week before, with footfall on high streets slumping by a massive 9.1% below the 2022 level.
Diane Wehrle, Insights Director at MRI Springboard, said: “Easter 2023 is more likely to follow long-term trends in footfall over the bank holiday weekend recorded by MRI Springboard over the past 16 years. This trend typically shows increases in footfall from the week before on Good Friday and Easter Saturday with a drop on Easter Monday, reflecting the fact that many office-based employees are on leave and so not in their offices on that day.”
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