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Gauging the Maltese people’s sentiments on the reopening of non-essential retail stores

By May 25, 2020No Comments

Gauging the Maltese people’s sentiments on the reopening of non-essential retail stores

  25/05/2020

Gauging the Maltese people’s sentiments on the reopening of non-essential retail stores

25/05/2020

On May 4th 2020, regulations regarding the closing of non-essential shops in Malta were relaxed for a limited category of stores. Onest Data has collaborated with LovinMalta to gauge the nation’s sentiments on the island’s reopening and relaxing of certain COVID-19 measures, particularly the ones related to shopping.

The survey was based on 556 respondents, resulting in a margin of error of 4% at a confidence level of 95%. 58% of the respondents were female, whilst 29% of the respondents are aged between 18-34. The full demographic data is shown below:

Benjamin Zammit,
Business Unit Leader
Fact: When I wake up I do 5 minutes of skipping.

ABOUT ONEST  

Benjamin Zammit,
Business Unit Leader
Fact: When I wake up I do 5 minutes of skipping.

ABOUT ONEST  

On May 4th 2020, regulations regarding the closing of non-essential shops in Malta were relaxed for a limited category of stores. Onest Data has collaborated with LovinMalta to gauge the nation’s sentiments on the island’s reopening and relaxing of certain COVID-19 measures, particularly the ones related to shopping.

The survey was based on 556 respondents, resulting in a margin of error of 4% at a confidence level of 95%. 58% of the respondents were female, whilst 29% of the respondents are aged between 18-34. The full demographic data is shown below:

When asked if they have visited non-essential stores in the past week, only 31% of respondents claimed that they have done so, with the most visited stores being clothes, handbag and shoe shops.

WHICH RETAIL OUTLETS HAVE YOU GONE TO?

When people who have not visited these stores were asked why they have not gone to these stores, 48% of respondents said that they believe it is too early, as the virus is still present, whilst 31%  mentioned that they are resorting to online shopping during these times. In fact, 60% of the respondents will wait more than 1 month before going to these retail stores.

WHY HAVEN’T YOU GONE TO RETAIL OUTLETS SINCE THE RELAXATION OF THE REGULATIONS?

Regarding health security implemented by these stores, 80% of respondents agree that everyone inside the store should use hand sanitiser gel before entering the store, whilst 47% believe that temperatures should be checked.

WHAT ARE YOUR EXPECTATIONS WITH REGARDS TO HYGIENE AND SANITISATION OF THE SHOPS WHICH REOPENED?

As queues are expected to become longer with these measures, only 1 out of 4 respondents are ready to queue regardless of the queue length, and 83% would like to know in advance how long a queue is. Out of those people who would use a pre-booking system, 78% would prefer a WhatsApp/SMS notification rather than an email or Facebook notification.

WOULD YOU LIKE TO RECEIVE THE CONFIRMATION FOR YOUR PRE-BOOKING THROUGH WHICH PLATFORM?

Business owners, on the other hand, have not yet felt the positive effects of these measures. In fact, 50% feel that they have not seen a boost in business since measures were relaxed. Whilst many businesses have resorted to online means to sell their products and services, 64% of respondents believe that online sales cannot make up for lost physical business, and in fact, less half of the interviewed business owners use online sales platforms.

The surveyed Maltese businesses who make use of online sales platforms use Facebook Shop (33%) and custom platforms (21%) amongst other online platforms.

WHAT PAYMENT PLATFORMS DO YOU USE FOR ONLINE SELLING?

Regarding the situation in the upcoming weeks, most respondents are not planning on visiting retail shops more than one time a week. On the other hand, the most popular stores are expected to be clothes, handbag and shoe shops.

HOW MANY TIMES A WEEK DO YOU PLAN ON VISITING THESE NON-ESSENTIAL OUTLETS?

When asked on an alternative of using video calls instead of going physically to a shop to buy an item, only 22% preferred this option. As expected, younger people were more likely to choose this option, but still not in an overwhelming manner.

WOULD YOU CURRENTLY PREFER TO BOOK AN APPOINTMENT FOR A VIDEO CALL OR THE PHYSICAL STORE EXPERIENCE TO PURCHASE A PRODUCT?

Conclusion

This study has given an overview of the people’s sentiment towards the recently relaxed measures regarding non-essential retail stores. The majority of people are still not very keen on visiting these stores as they believe it is too early and the risk of contracting the virus is still high. Clothes, handbag and shoe shops were the most popular of these stores, and they are also expected to remain so in the upcoming weeks. People believe strict measures such as hand sanitisation and temperature checking should be done before entering the stores. Whilst Maltese businesses are still not too keen on moving their sales to online platforms, most shops are finding Facebook Shops as a useful platform for the job. Finally, the majority of respondents are still reluctant to use video tools to buy items.

DOWNLOAD OUR REPORT ON THE RE-OPENING ON
NON-ESSENTIAL RETAIL STORES IN MALTA.

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