SHOPPING MALLS REPORT HIGHER CONVERSION & REVIVAL RATES IN FESTIVAL SEASON; BEAUTY, ATHLEISURE, JEWELLERY & WATCHES TOP PERFORMERS IN TIER II CITIES
Shopping Centre News|February 2021
Shopping Centre News conducted a survey on ‘Consumer Sentiment, Behaviour and Comparisons of Sales in Festival Season (2019-2020)’ to find out the exact situation of the Shopping Centre Industry on the ground. 35 shopping malls pan India (from Tier I, II & III cities), participated in the survey and the results were quite overwhelming. Though the percentage in sales, revenue, footfall has been less in comparison to last year, the conversion rate and revival rate saw a huge surge. As a result, mall developers are looking forward to a speedy recovery in comparison to what they had predicted during the initial stages lockdown…

Shopping Centre News in association with Shopping Centres Association of India (SCAI) conducted a survey on ‘Consumer Sentiment, Behaviour and Comparisons of Sales in Festival Season (2019-2020)’ to find out the exact situation of the Shopping Centre Industry on the ground. The survey analyses the details of how shopping malls have been performing since the onset of the festive season during COVID (from October to December) specifically gaining insights on sales, footfalls, dwell time, conversions, consumer demographics and out-of-the box retail innovations, etc. as compared to the previous year.

35 shopping malls pan India (from Tier I, II& III cities), participated in the survey and the results were quite overwhelming. Though the percentage in sales, revenue, footfall has been less in comparison to last year, the conversion rate and revival rate saw a huge surge. As a result, mall developers are looking forward to a speedy recovery in comparison to what they had predicted during the initial stages of lockdown.

Footfall Analysis & Consumer Demographics

Shopping malls survive on footfalls. If people are not walking into malls to shop, eat, gain experiences, and be entertained, the mall will not survive even if it has the best of brands, is the largest mall in area and is considered to be the best run and most popular among its peers. The COVID-19 pandemic was a body blow to the Shopping Centre Industry because first, people were not allowed to come out of their houses in lockdown and second, when the lockdown was lifted, consumers themselves were scared of contracting the rapidly spreading virus.

TOP 15: KEY HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE SURVEY

Growing malls transformed into Mature malls in 2020 and faced the most challenging year marred by COVID

Metro-city conversion differential remained higher than all India

Tier-II cities delivered highest conversion rate among all the cities

The core shopper (74 percent share) remained in the age group of 15-45 years. The group showed 4 percent differential gain over previous year’s share

Top 3 categories with High growths are Beauty & wellness (51 percent), Athleisure (29 percent) and Jewellery & watches (20 percent)

Increased conversion rate and reduced dwell time indicates that focused shoppers visited malls to make urgent purchases in quick time

Increased men share and decreased kids share in footfalls vouch for precautionary shopping, accompanied by women with almost same share

Women formed the largest share in footfalls in growing & mature mall segments

Shopping malls footfalls in festival season in 2020 declined by 53 percent in comparison to the 2019

Tier I cities delivered lowest of conversion rate despite showing a differential gain of 7 percent

Footfall shortfall resulted in decline in sales across all categories over previous year, least and highest being in Consumer Electronics (-23 percent) and Foodservice (-48 percent). Yet all categories except Foodservice reported growth over 2019 performance in few malls.

Around 90 percent malls host cinema/ FECs. More than 40 percent of these malls operated with 15-50 percent occupancy while one- fifth refrained from operating their entertainment zones

Some malls reported to have operated with occupancy as low as 3-4 percent. Unsettled occupancy malls encountered inconsistent occupancy rate

On reopening, 26 percent of fully operational malls worked with 90 percent or more staff and equal number of malls reported to have operated with 50 percent staff

58 percent of all hiring/outsourcing happened to implement COVID safety measures while 1/3rd of total was done to strengthen technical area and for the purpose of digitalisation

As more and more shoppers are coming out of their homes, a huge incline was witnessed in the shoppers above 50 years as well. Even the elderly and women shoppers were accompanied by the kids. About 20 percent of the malls reported kids percentage going up by 15-20 percent, which was absolutely zero in the month of July. Around 40 percent of malls reported an increase of elderly shoppers by 30 percent.

The average dwell time spent also increased during the festival season. The average dwell time more most malls in July-August was in between 45 minutes to 1.30 hours depending on the waiting line and COVID safety measures checking process. This drastically increased to 2.30 hours and above since October. People are spending more and more time in the malls by either visiting the restaurants, kiosks and joints inside the mall. The average dwell time in retail stores has also increased to above one hour, despite trial rooms still not being functional. As cinemas and multiplexes have also opened up in few shopping malls, those malls are witnessing consumers spending around 3-4 hours as well. Even people have started booking restaurants and gaming zones with limited number of visitors for birthdays and other parties and therefore it is also adding to the footfalls and revenue both for the malls and brand.

Observation: The arrival of festival and wedding season saw, consumers finally started coming out to shop in the malls in good number. Despite this, there was decline in footfalls by 53 percent in comparison to the festival season in 2019. However, the rise in conversion rate was a huge boost for the malls but the reduced dwell time indicated that despite all the excitement and enthusiasm, shoppers visited mall to make urgent purchases in quick time, in all the categories.

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