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28th January 2021
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UK shoppers explain why they hate the High Street
High streets across Britain are struggling to survive because customers hate the experience of town centre shopping, a leading supplier of store fittings says.
Shoppers dislike having to pay inflated prices for parking with no guarantee that they'll find the goods or services they require at the right price.
Additionally, customers are also put off by the increasingly scruffy nature of many town centres, with boarded-up shops and gangs of youths cited as reasons they'd rather stay at home and join the online shopping revolution.
"It's become a vicious circle," says Ian Ashworth of shopfitDirect.co.uk "As more people abandon the High Street, the more shops close and the worse the shopping experience.
"As professionals in the shop fitting industry, we're in a unique position to see what's happening, but it's not all bad news. The more imaginative, customer-centred outlets are going to survive, and it's encouraging to see them fighting back."
According to shopfitDirect.co.uk, shoppers cited these 10 factors as reasons they avoid town centre shopping:
* Parking too expensive
* Too many closed shops
* Loud in-store music
* Yobs and drunks hanging around
* Far easier to shop online
* Pushy sales assistants
* Having to queue
* Finding item offered cheaper the next day by the same store
* Difficulty returning items
* Dislike of using money-off vouchers
"As you can see, just as much of the problem lies with the shops' attitude as it does with the state of the economy," says Ian, "Often they don't realise how big a turn-off loud music or bewildering returns polices can be."
"The bottom line is that stores have to face up to the fact that they are forcing customers and their money out of their doors through poor staff training who offer poor service. If the store and its staff make people feel uncomfortable they won't return. It's as simple as that."
According to shopfitDirect.co.uk the ease of shopping on the Internet wasn't a significant factor in people's opinions on High Street shopping.
"People just want a decent first-hand personalised shopping experience in pleasant shops," says Ian. "That's not hard to deliver."
28th June 2013