The return of the big weekly shop

As we all adjust to new routines and norms during our shopping trips, many of us are also reverting to a more traditional way of managing their weekly grocery trips: we are making fewer trips but buying more – a hark back to the traditional grocery shop!

That is the finding of market research company Kantar, which has been analysing our habits. Here at Aberafan Shopping Centre, these trends certainly seem true with people visiting less but buying more on each visit.

Grocery sales in the UK rose by 5.5% year-on-year in the four weeks to April 19, according to research. That was a lot lower than a record of 20.6% increase in March, when many people were bulk buying, but sales to April 19 were still £524 million higher than they were a year before.

But the other trend that emerged was people doing fewer trips. Research showed that on average households in Britain shopped only 14 times for groceries over the four weeks, a record low and down from 17 in more normal times. However, people were spending some £26 more per trip.

We are also finding other ways of feeding our families and keeping ourselves busy. The data showed that 40% of people are doing more home baking, with sales of suet and sugar hugely up year on year. Sales of alcohol is also up, as people drink more at home, instead of in the pub.

Meanwhile, though Friday and Saturday remain the most popular days to go shopping, disruption to the normal working week means the proportion of trips made Monday to Thursday has increased.

More of us are now shopping online. Online sales account for 10.2% of the total grocery market, with research showing sales circa 7% prior to the crisis, with the greatest increase among older shoppers. Although not previously big users of e-commerce, people over 65 spent 94% more on deliveries than they did a year ago.

So the next time you visit the Aberafan Shopping Centre, ask yourself if you are typical of such research. And we would like to remind all our visitors to stay safe and follow government guidelines. For some top tips on shopping safely, read our blog here.

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