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Shoppers Prefer Malls To High Streets

Thu 9 June 2011
A Retail Eyes survey of 6,294 UK consumers and shown that the British public  prefer shopping in indoor shopping malls than on the nation’s high streets.
It’s not just the English weather that is causing UK shoppers to prefer shopping indoors. Easier parking facilities coupled with a wider array of shopping choices have meant that popularity of out-of-town shopping malls has soared in the last few years.
Government figures show that between 2005 and 2010, town-centre sales grew by 1.5%, while those in out of town shopping centres grew 11.5% and non-store (mail order and internet) soared by 71.5%.
The future of the British high street is very much on the Government's agenda at present, with the announcement last month of Mary Portas' appointment as adviser on the issue. High street outlets have been hit hard by the combination of the recession and the growth in online shopping. Large chains such as Woolworths, Zavvi and Borders have closed and these premises’ have continued to remain empty in many towns as retailers move into more accessible, more populated malls.
Simon Boydell, Marketing Manager of Retail Eyes, says: “Consumers are no longer opting to visit high streets which were once the heart of the community. Today, choice, convenience and parking are top of the consumers agenda and they are allowing themselves more time to visit easily-accessible malls on the edge of towns, which offer a more collective, shopper-centric experience.  
Undoubtedly, high streets up and down the country are feeling the effect of high rents and Local Governments and Councils introducing parking restrictions.

For high streets to survive, retailers must find ways of luring consumers back to the high street through localised products and services and by delivering exciting and exceptional service that leaves customers feeling wowed and valued.”