The research and report, Post-Lockdown Plans, was commissioned by Paymentsense to uncover how consumers are shifting their habits to support local community businesses and that the goodwill from the public will continue into the summer and beyond with most Brits saying they will do their bit to support the country’s local businesses.

It was found that 32 million people were supporting local and small businesses online – this is almost half the UK’s population since we went into lockdown in March. Instagram was the most popular platform (66%) used for growing terms such as #shoplocal and #supportsmallbusiness.

Top brands to be mentioned alongside these posts were Nike, The Association of Convenience Stores and Royal Mail. Many delivery services such as royal mail are encouraging postal use to deliver goods to customers and how to still operate successful as a small business.

Nike on the other hand, has been celebrated for its ‘Nike Community Impact Fund’ wherein they have donated $17 million to the support grassroots organisations that focus on sport and physical activity during Covid-19.

UK changing habits to support local business

Nearly two-thirds (62%) of the population plans to stay loyal to the local businesses that helped them through lockdown with almost half (44%) saying that lockdown has made them change their shopping habits and they now plan to shop locally, while 55 per cent intend to consciously spend more money in local shops after lockdown as a show of support.

Convenience isn’t just the only reason for the changes, with more than a third (37%) insisting that their local shops provided better produce than big supermarket chains and they’ll be using them after lockdown. What’s more, 45 per cent said they were appalled with how some large businesses behaved during lockdown, which has made them review how they shop.

More than half (53%) agreed they will continue supporting local restaurants and cafes after lockdown by spending more money there, with just over a third (34%) of the country saying they missed their local independent restaurant or café the most and planning to eat there after lockdown.

For key workers who were still working at small local businesses during lockdown, 52 per cent of respondents said they would be happy to spend a bit more if it meant that those workers could get a pay rise.

Most supportive small business cities

Below is a percentage of residents in each city who have proclaimed they are planning to support local businesses post-lockdown more than before the pandemic has arisen:

1.     Belfast – 72%

2.     Bristol – 71%

3.     Edinburgh – 68%

4.     Brighton – 67%

5.     Nottingham – 67%

6.     Manchester – 66%

7.     Sheffield – 63%

8.     Glasgow – 62%

9.     Liverpool – 61%

10.   Birmingham – 60%

11.   London – 59%

12.   Leeds – 58%

13.   Newcastle – 58%

14.   Norwich – 58%

15.   Plymouth – 57%

16.   Southampton – 57%

17.   Cardiff – 56%

Consumer plans to spend lockdown savings 

The report reveals that despite the tricky period, 63 per cent of people have saved money since lockdown, with 20 per cent of the nation keen on splashing the cash once the restrictions have been lifted.

Rank Activity  Percentage of people
1. Going to the hairdressers 40%
2. Booking a holiday and going abroad 31%
3. Going to the pub 27%
4. Clothes shopping on the highstreet 20%
5. Eating out in a restaurant 20%

Almost a quarter (23%) say they will be spending their money on a holiday after lockdown. This looks to be promising news for the UK holiday market, with 11 per cent looking to spend on a staycation in the coming months.

Other activities that Brits intend to spend on include, 11 per cent plan on using their savings on a meal out, while only six per cent want a night out, and eight per cent are keen to buy new clothes.

After weeks and weeks of being in lockdown, the most sought-after activity is attending hair appointments, with Brits set to flock to the salon as 40 per cent say that a haircut is their number one priority once restrictions are lifted.

Nearly a third (31%) are most looking forward to booking a holiday and going abroad, with 27 per cent raring to go to the pub, and a quarter (26%) wanting to go to an outdoor restaurant.

For 20 per cent, being able to try on clothes in person beats online shopping and are most excited to go clothes shopping again. And 19 per cent are excited to get the real cinema experience again, rather than simply streaming films at home.

A spokesperson from Paymentsense said:

“Businesses have been facing a tremendously difficult battle under the circumstances, but as we have seen before, the British public is willing to rally around the community in tough times. The data shows what appears to be a change in attitude to the way people intend to shop following the end of lockdown, as consumers re-evaluate how and where they wish to spend in the future. 

This looks like good news for the local businesses who have faced the restrictions and dangers posed by Coronavirus, with shoppers showing positive sentiment towards them.”

For more information on the report visit: https://www.paymentsense.com/uk/blog/post-lockdown-consumer-plans/