When will California’s retail foot traffic return to normal? – TipsClear
If current trend is on hold: September 19, 2020
Only looking at Data for the first two months of 2020, you would have been tempted to declare – and without good reason – that it was taking shape as a banner year for brick-and-mortar retailers. In the last week of February, there was a 3.5% increase in national in-store traffic compared to the previous year. California’s walk-in numbers during the same period were just below the 2019 figures, hovering in the 97% -99% range. The US had experienced 23 consecutive quarters of GDP growth, one of the longest such periods in modern history. It felt to many that there was nothing that could cool America’s red-hot economy.
And then, in early March, it fell down. As the novel coronovirus outbreak spread across the country and the world (and the way state and local governments fought to control it), foot traffic decreased across the board. By the end of the month, nationwide retail walk-ins equaled 27.1% of the previous year’s figures. California was not much better, with foot traffic dropping by 30.3% at the end of the month. In addition, both California and the US as a whole hit foot traffic low point in mid-April, with walk-ins at 26.1% and 25.2%, respectively.
One particularly interesting information that we have gained from our data is that retail foot traffic started well this fall. before this Most of the states had issued place orders. For reference, only eight states had implemented quarantine orders by 23 March, and so far nationwide walk-ins had already fallen 59.7% from the level two weeks earlier. California experienced an almost identical decline of 58.8% over the same period.
This early decline was likely due (at least in part) to the fact that some early states also had the most population to issue asylum-in-possession orders. In addition to California (# 1 in terms of population), New York (# 4), Illinois (# 6) and Ohio (# 7) were also among the first eight states. However, that interpretation does not tell the whole story. Consumer concerns about hygiene and safety almost certainly played a role.
So what does all this information tell us? When we can expect consumer foot traffic to come back to a level we can consider normal in California?
19 September. Let’s dig into the data.
Ellen Brubacher, a 79-year-old retiree living in Southern California, has markedly changed her shopping habits during the epidemic. Prior to the spread of COVID-19, she usually went shopping twice a week. Now, she simply says, “I don’t go out.” Brubacher limits his shopping trips to once every ten days, and even then, for requirements only. Grocery store or pharmacy – I am not doing any other shopping other than this which is completely necessary. I am not comfortable with “normal shopping”.