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‘Particular’ Brits demand the ‘Three Cs’ when going shopping

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British shoppers are looking for ‘cleanliness, customer service and low cost’ when they go shopping according to Colliers’ Midsummer Retail Report. Measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19 are no longer seen as important but a legacy of the pandemic seems to be that people have become more fastidious in their approach to cleanliness.

When asked what would influence them to spend at shops, affordability and customer service scored 13x higher than any other considerations. 

The findings are part of YouGov research carried out for the Midsummer Retail Report – the annual ‘state-of the-nation’ review of the UK retail property market by leading consultancy, Colliers.

Paul Matthews, Co-Head of Retail Strategy at Colliers reports: “After more than two years of restrictions on how and where they shopped, UK shoppers have emerged with a new set of attitudes  and priorities.

“Whilst the habits of mask wearing and social distancing are diminishing, there is clearly a new emphasis on cleanliness and this has ramifications for retailers and also the landlords of shopping centres and retail parks.”

Paul continues: “As the costs of living crisis bites, it’s understandable that there is a new focus on affordability. This should be positive news for the UK’s value and discount retailers in the short-term, but also a call to action for all occupiers and landlords to reflect on their strategies and ensure that there  are ongoing changes in consumer behaviours and expectations.”

The survey also makes it clear that if people are going to be coaxed away from online retailing and back to ‘real life’ shopping they want excellent customer service. This may pose a challenge for retailers who are trying to manage their own costs and may be struggling to find staff. 

David Fox, Co-head of Colliers’ Retail team comments: “Interestingly, the research shows that there is a growing trend for people to research products online but then purchase them in a store. It shows the importance of physical stores where people can see, feel and try products and to speak to someone about them face-to-face. This trend will only be encouraged as more retailers charge for returning items via couriers, but promote in store returns and exchanges."

The survey asked people about the importance of different channels when thinking about buying anything and looking at overall net importance (those who think it’s important minus those who don’t). The results revealed that researching online and buying in-store had a significantly higher net importance compared to browsing in store and buying online (37% vs. 1%).

“The research demonstrates that - as omni-channel retailing matures and people develop preferences for what they buy online and what they want to shop for in-person - if brands can get their offer right then there will be no shortage of willing shoppers heading for high streets, shopping centres and retail parks across the country.”

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Related Experts

Paul Matthews


Retail Strategy & Analytics

London - West End

Paul is Director and co-lead of the Retail Strategy & Analytics practice, with 13 years’ experience working with occupiers to grow and optimize their store/branch portfolios. Prior to Colliers, Paul was Global Lead for the ‘Shape of Chain’ real estate analytics proposition at Accenture/Javelin Group.

He advises clients globally on store location and performance optimisation strategies, spanning the occupier spectrum from fashion, grocery and homewares through to F&B, leisure and retail banking (and beyond).

Paul’s experience includes sales forecasting for a US grocer, UK entry and roll-out strategy for an international F&B operator, branch rationalisation strategy for a UK bank, and estate conslidation strategy for a Telco merger.

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David Fox

Co-Head of Retail Agency

Retail Agency - North

London - West End

 I am a former partner at BCL and have specialised in retail property in the Midlands ,North ,Scotland and Northern Ireland throughout my career.
Within my role as Co Head of UK Retail Agency  I have responsibility for our retail coverage in Birmingham,Leeds ,Manchester ,Glasgow and Edinburgh , and continue to build relationships with new and existing clients. 

Over my career I have advised a wide number of retail occupiers in their proprty strategies including DixonsCarphone, Boux Avenue , Hotel Chocolat , Costa and  Oliver Bonas.

I have advised a  range of investors , institutions and property companies in respect of their assets across the country , including shopping centres, high streets , transport hubs and retail parks. 

In an ever changing market  my experience has extended into asset management roles in respect of compromised shopping centres on behalf of recovery specialists and  lenders. The repurposing and regeneration of town centres and shopping centres  is an area of particular interest and  the focus of my team and colleagues.  as our industry rises to the challenge     set by change.



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Hannah Zitren

Associate Director

Marketing & Communications


I am responsible for media relations and generating coverage in top tier broadcast and print media. I work across a range of Colliers’ UK & Pan-EMEA business lines advising on their strategic and tactical PR needs.

My role includes:

·         Developing and executing PR plans for the various business lines to help promote their key messages across all aspects of the media - print, broadcast and social.

·          Media evaluation and reporting objectives, targets and successes across the business.

·         Reputation management and crisis management.

·         Media training.

·         Media engagement: setting up meetings with top tier media and various internal spokespeople to continuously expand and build a presence with property and vertical media network.

·         Consistently delivering service excellence, meeting with business heads of a regular basis and trying to influence the research as much as possible to ensure our content has a strong enough news hook.

·         Key campaigns that I work on include MIPIM; MAPIC; REVO; Midsummer Retail Report; IHIF; Cities of Influence in addition to a host of all alternative property sector research reports.

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