COVID-19 measures are beginning to take a toll on grocery stores with customer visits down 27 per cent year over year, according to new data from PiinPoint.
Grocery stores initially saw a massive increase in visits leading up to the COVID-19 pandemic announcement, as people stocked up on supplies. Amidst the battles for toilet paper and panic-buying, there was a surge of visits to Grocery stores, peaking at a 196% increase on March 23 when compared to the previous year. However, following the stock-up period and this large increase, visits are still down 27% year over year.
Overall visits to all retailers is down to 76 per cent from the same time last year.
PiinPoint compiled the information using anonymous mobile location data from a sample of Canadians, to understand how their movement patterns have changed during the pandemic.
"For this report, we collected data from retailers in Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver, and anonymously tracking visits to banks, clothing and home stores, electronic and office suppliers, fast food restaurants, full-service restaurants, gas stations, grocery stores, home improvement stores, and movie theatres, as well as the retail industry in general," says Brendan Sherratt, marketing manager for PiinPoint.