Forget ‘road-rage’, a new study has revealed that UK shoppers should prepare themselves this week for ‘slowed-rage’ – the frustration they feel when faced with slow walkers.
As shops gear up for one of the busiest weekends in the retail calendar, new research by Mastercard’s Masterpass – the simple, convenient, trusted digital wallet for safer, faster shopping – has found that slow walking by others is a grievance for 84% of shoppers.
The average walking speed is 2.85mph but this is set to decrease by 21% during the Christmas period as shoppers spend more time browsing, resulting in a reduction in the number of gifts we’re able to purchase in one shopping trip by one and a half items.
The ‘slowed-rage’ epidemic is most prevalent in London, where four out of five people (80%) – more than any other region – admitted to having experienced the frustration.
In the run up to Black Friday, Mastercard has teamed up with intu, owner of many of the UK’s largest and most popular retail and leisure destinations, to trial a Masterpass ‘Click and Collect’ Fast Lane.
As Brits approach the 6-hour and 42-minute hunt for key gifts, research shows they’ll encounter four groups of shoppers – Skaters, Dodgers, Bull-dozers and Tutters.
- Skaters – almost a third (31%) of us try and elegantly manoeuvre our way through a crowd, gracefully and politely avoiding those in our path
- Dodgers – 51% of us have moved paths to avoid slow walkers with 39% moving themselves out of the way, carving their own fast lane
- Bull-dozers – 11% of us have driven our way through crowds to get what we need
- Tutters – 15% of us will merely grumble loudly – unhappy about our situation
intu Lakeside is the first retail destination to install the 200-metre Masterpass lane for the week running up to Black Friday, encouraging shoppers of all paces – whether rollers or strollers – to walk its festive halls this Christmas. The fast lane allows the quickest of shoppers to masterfully pass through the centre, picking up shopping at speed providing extra time to spend enjoying the food and entertainment on offer.
The lane should aid the quarter of Brits (27%) who have missed a bus and the 13% of us who have reached our shopping destinations late and after closing hours due to others.
Elliott Goldenberg, head of Masterpass at Mastercard said: “All the retailers we work with are refining their business models to meet the needs of today’s shopper. Our spending data shows a real change in buying behaviour as people continue to blend both online shopping and visiting stores for gifts. What technology gives them is speed and convenience, but they really want to see that experience reflected on the high street.
“intu Lakeside is a great example of how retailers are adapting to these needs, and catering to a much broader range of shopper preferences. Some might like to make shopping a social occasion, some want to just click and collect and others might want to browse before buying online.”
Kate Nightingale, founder and CEO, Style Psychology and consumer behaviour expert said: “We live in a ‘fast culture’ where everything that’s done fast and in a more efficient manner is better. People feel the need to reply instantly to emails and are asked to deliver work in a previously unimaginable speed. It is therefore no surprise that they might have similar demands of others, walking fast and using precious time efficiently being just some of them. Further sense of urgency created by limited time offers from retailers increases the need to speed along and powers up the already high levels of competition between shoppers.
On the other hand, there is a growing popularity of ‘slow movement’, e.g. slow fashion, slow food and even slow design. As people pay more attention to their well-being, slowing down and being mindful are just some of the results.
It is a great idea from Mastercard and Lakeside to introduce a click and collect fast lane so that everyone can enjoy their Christmas shopping the way they want to.”
Trevor Pereira, commercial and digital director at Intu, said: “Black Friday for some of our customers is the start of their Christmas shopping and our job is to make their shopping experience as pleasurable as possible. For some people that might be being able to quickly and easily pick up their ‘Click and Collect’ items, allowing them to spend the rest of their day browsing for inspiration, grabbing a bite to eat with friends or watching the latest blockbuster.”