Sales at UK convenience stores grew by almost a fifth (17%) in the last four weeks ending 13 June 2020, as UK consumers in lockdown prioritise shopping at their most local and convenient store.
This is according to new data from Nielsen, which found that demand for convenience shopping had outpaced overall total till sales in the grocery market (14%) during the same period – with 25% of shoppers claiming to shop more at their closest local store than they did pre-Covid.
Within this small store format, sales at independent shops and symbol retailers (franchises) also grew by an average of 33% in the last four weeks ending 13 June 2020.
In contrast, despite this increase in convenience store shopping, Nielsen data shows that overall sales at bricks-and-mortar grocery retailers grew by only 6%, whereas online sales grew 115% compared to the same period last year, maintaining the online share of sales at 13% in the last four weeks.
The average spend per shopping visit across all formats was £20.32, a decrease of £1.30 compared to the previous four weeks.
Mike Watkins, Nielsen’s UK head of retailer and business insight, said: “After three months of lockdown, UK shoppers have clearly adapted to their new shopping routines and in the last four weeks have shopped in the same way as they did in April and May – fewer visits but bigger trolleys and bigger basket spend.
“Whilst the dramatic shift to online has been significant, we expect this share of sales to be maintained over the next few months. However, what is just as important is how shoppers have now embraced ‘ultra local’ stores during this time.”