Coronavirus: 29% of Brits refuse to queue to buy beauty products as shops reopen

With non-essential retail stores having opened their doors on Monday (June 15) as coronavirus lockdown restrictions were further eased, the buying behaviour of Brits is expected to change, with 29% of UK consumers stating they simply won’t queue to buy beauty products.

According to market analyst The NPD Group’s Covid-19 Consumer Sentiment Pulse Survey, online shopping will remain the most popular option for a while, with nearly half (45%) saying they will buy their beauty essentials from a shopping website instead.

Many consumers (35%) also said they’re not prepared to wait when testing a beauty product, and more than a quarter (26%) would not line-up to pay, found the report. 

A waiting time of 10 minutes is the preferred time that shoppers (29%) are willing to wait in line before entering a store, while only a small percentage (6%) are prepared to queue for 30 minutes.  

In addition, 10 minutes is also the preferred time that shoppers are happy to wait to test a product (26%) and to pay (28%), the research showed. A third of consumers also said it is very unlikely they will go shopping without a specific purchase or product in mind. 

However, consumers do expect to return to bricks and mortar stores in time, with the largest proportion prepared to shop in town or a city centre (32%), under a quarter (22%) a retail park or shopping centre, and 15% a small store. 

However, hygiene and social distancing are paramount as stores reopen, with the experience needing to be adapted. A large majority (82%) said they feel apprehensive about trying a beauty product in-store, and more than half (54%) want increased hand sanitisation options in retail outlets, the report found. 

Just under half (48%) also believe that disposable testers are essential, while 46% expect counter staff to wear face coverings. 

“Visiting bricks-and-mortar stores is an exciting prospect for many consumers and queuing and social distancing will become the norm,” said Emma Fishwick, account manager for  NPD UK beauty.

“Beauty buyers in our survey are willing to queue but ensuring a short wait time will be critical to benefit the maximum number of people who want to shop.” 

What do you make of the survey? Comment below. 


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