Business booming for local retailers, says Barclaycard

Credit cards

The latest data from Barclaycard, which sees nearly half of the nation’s credit and debit card transactions, has revealed that food and drink specialist stores – which includes independent convenience stores, off-licences, greengrocers, butchers and bakeries – enjoyed 37.7% year-on-year growth during April.

The figure sits in stark contrast to overall consumer spending, which contracted by 36.5% over the same period, showing the impact of ongoing social distancing measures.

Over half (57%) of Brits said the current environment has made them realise how much they value local retailers. As a result, UK adults are planning to spend more locally when restrictions are lifted.

Supermarkets also continued to see a boost in sales – climbing 14.3% as Brits made larger shops and prepared more meals at home.

Spending on essential items declined by 7.5%, which can largely be attributed to a 58.9% reduction in fuel spend.

Spending on non-essentials fell by 47.7% with travel, which includes public transport, seeing a decline of 86.8% as much of the UK stopped commuting. The closure of bars, pubs and clubs saw these businesses plummet by 96.9%.

Esme Harwood, Director at Barclaycard, said: “It’s been a tough time for retailers as consumer spending has dropped considerably under lockdown.

“A renewed sense of community may be welcome news for independent businesses, with a growing desire to support local stores in life after lockdown.”