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Consumers Looking Forward to Non-Essential Retailers Reopening, as Long as There Are Safety Precautions

Half of Americans plan to visit non-essential retailers within a week of reopening; Gen Z most likely to visit within first few days.

As more and more states announce plans for reopening non-essential businesses, consumers are already thinking about which retailers to visit, when and how often. In findings from Shopkick’s latest consumer survey, it is clear that Americans are ready and raring to return to stores, but expect proper safety and health precautions to be in place before they do so.

Shopkick surveyed more than 10,000 consumers across the country from April 29-May 3, 2020 to gain insights into their thoughts and feelings about the reopening of non-essential retailers.

Key Findings:

In-Store Shopping Plans

  • Fashion First: Once non-essential retailers reopen, most consumers (61 percent) say they plan to visit apparel, shoe and accessories stores, followed by beauty stores (50 percent), home improvement stores (42 percent), entertainment and hobby stores (39 percent) and home decor stores (34 percent).
  • Within a Week: Half of Americans (50 percent) say they plan to visit non-essential retailers within a week of reopening. Twenty percent will wait at least a week before visiting reopened businesses, 18 percent will wait three days or less, and 12 percent will wait four to six days. Nineteen percent of people plan to wait at least two weeks, while 22 percent will wait over a month. Once stores reopen, 58 percent of consumers say they will shop as frequently as before the pandemic, while 36 percent will shop less frequently.
  • Gen Z is Ready to Roll: When broken down by generation, the largest segment – Gen Zers (27 percent) – say they will hit the stores within just three days of reopening.
  • BOPIS a Bonus: Nearly 70 percent of consumers say they will take advantage of buy-online-pickup-in-store options if available. And most (65 percent) plan to make the majority of their non-essential purchases in-store, rather than online.

Health and Safety Precautions

  • Consumers Need Confidence: Most consumers say they expect non-essential retailers to take additional in-store precautions such as 6-feet social distancing measures (81 percent), offering disinfectants for customers (73 percent), requiring employees to wear protective face coverings (71 percent), installing plexiglass barriers at checkout counters (65 percent), and requiring shoppers to wear protective face coverings (62 percent).
  • Shopper vs. Shopper: Once consumers return to shopping in-store, 32 percent say their biggest concern is other shoppers not heeding the safety precautions. Other concerns include retailers not actively enforcing these precautions (28 percent), overcrowding (16 percent) and not knowing where the 6-feet social distancing marks are (15 percent). Consumers are less worried about limits on the number of purchases per customer (5 percent) or limits on the number of people allowed in the store (5 percent).

“While it is reassuring that most Americans are eager to return to in-store shopping, retailers and businesses need to be aware of customers’ heightened expectations of the in-store experience,” said Dave Fisch, general manager of Shopkick. “As retailers and businesses around the country ramp up plans for reopening, they must adjust to the new normal and prioritize putting in place measures to keep their spaces as safe as possible for customers.”

If you are a non-essential retailer planning to reopen, Shopkick can help you build and roll out a reopening strategy through various mobile and location-based activations and incentives. Contact to learn more.


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