Brexit has already begun to take its toll on the British shopper a full four months before the planned exit from the EU. New research released today by Blis, the global leader in real-world intelligence, reveals that many Brits are already stockpiling items in preparation for the big day, while the majority of us anticipate having less disposable cash to spare after 31 October.
Over two fifths (43%) of Brits are worried that Brexit is going to cause a disturbance to the way they like to shop. It is the younger generation – those who will grow up to see the full effects of Brexit – that expect things to change the most, with half (48%) of 25 to 34-year olds thinking that their shopping habits will be directly impacted. This is considerably more than the older generation of 66+, of which only 22% worry about the impact of Brexit on their shopping. Furthermore, students (48%) and full-time workers (47%) who tend to be very money-conscious are also worrying the most.
Many (40%) have already started holding on to items they fear will deplete in supply. In anticipation of the worst-case scenario, the most common type of stockpiled item is food (56%) closely followed by household items (44%) and medicine (37%). Even clothing and shoes are being snapped up in advance with over a quarter (28%) of people looking to bag a pre-Brexit bargain. Those in retirement or part-time work seem to be the most anxious with the highest propensity for demonstrating the stockpiling trend. Whereas being a man is the biggest driver for Brexit stockpiling in general, with 50% of men keeping hold of items compared to just a third of women.
Of the many Brits thinking about the impact of leaving the EU on their shopping, most (55%) are specifically concerned about having less disposable income to spend. In this case, it’s 55 to 65-year olds who fear the most, with two thirds (66%) expecting to have to pocket more of their cash and rein in any extra spending. This is closely followed by 56% of 18 to 24-year olds. And it seems that overall, a lot more women (63%) are expecting to have less cash to spare than men (49%).
With uncertainty around Brexit, Blis interviewed over 1000 consumers up and down the UK to better understand how the event is going to affect Brits’ shopping habits. The research, developed in partnership with Sapio research explores the state of British retail in 2019 and analyses what changes have already emerged in the realm of consumer spending as a result of digital, social and political changes.
The full report can be read here.