Experian FootFall: Seasonal advice for shopping centres

Published:  17 December, 2014

At busy times of year like Christmas, it is vital that shopping centre managers and landlords focus on their core offering and differentiation over other channels like ecommerce as Robert Wilkinson, strategic account director at Experian FootFall, explains.

The success of Christmas promotional events such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday have been widely publicised as a sign of shoppers embrace online retail, but there is still plenty of time for shopping centres to maximise consumer spending potential right up to the last minute.  Indeed, having analysed footfall data from previous years, Experian FootFall is predicting that Tuesday 23 December will be the busiest high street Christmas shopping day, with footfall expected to be up 53 per cent on the daily average.

In order to maximise this opportunity, it is vital that all shopping centre communication channels – from advertising in local newspapers, properly staffed information desks and social media – work in concert to promote the fact that they are open and ready for business. 

As Christmas approaches and home delivery slots fill up, the switch from online shopping to stores, swelled by increased click and collect demand, creates new demands for shopping centres during this critical trading period.  And if anchor retailers are offering click and collect services, it is important that car parking facilities are optimised and stay open as long as possible.

Shopping centres need to underline the experiential element that cannot be replicated elsewhere.  So a Santa’s Grotto for children, or a pop-up spa treatment for parents can enhance the Christmas shop and encourage consumers to stay longer.

By bringing all these elements together, shopping centres can maximise their festive offering, to help ensure their customers have a more enjoyable experience, which should mean that they are likely to spend more and come back more often next year.

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