Brits call it the perfect high street, with bakers as well as post offices and restaurants.
It should also include a butcher, a pub, a library, fishmonger, and a zero waste shop.
Yet, only 17 percent shop from local, small businesses. Only 43 percent admit to using their high streets less than once per month.
The study of 2,000 adults found that 74% are concerned about the decline in the local high street and that 78% want to see it resurrect.
Tyl by NatWest was the researcher and is a new provider of payments for micro- and SMEs.
To encourage the return to their high street, 41% of people who shop at larger chains would switch to shopping locally.
58% would be more inclined than those who live in high streets to shop there if they offered loyalty programs or rewards.
CEO, Mike Elliff, said: “There are still many fantastic high streets to be found in Britain, but there are also many factors eroding our use of them on a regular basis.
“This research also shows the popularity of the food and drink industry, taking the majority of the top ten voted for shops.
“Making up the backbone of a perfect high street, business owners have the opportunity to improve sales and really grab a slice of the high street action!
“Having great local businesses on our doorstep is something Brits really appreciate, and it would be a shame to see the high street continue its decline in the wake of the online shopping boom and the effects of the pandemic.
“With the cost of trading and an impending recession, it’s important that we support our local shops as much as possible.”
Nearly half of Brits believe their highstreets meet their needs.
The study also found that 31% of people polled felt sad or depressed visiting these areas.
More than half (55%) feel guilty about not using local businesses and opting instead for larger supermarkets or chains.
26 percent are worried about the cost of moving away from larger chain stores to buy their goods.
According to OnePoll, charity and pound stores are more common than ever. On a typical British high-street, there are four of them.
37% of respondents stated that online shopping was the primary reason for the decline.
18% believe the decline is due in part to the rise in trading costs. 17 percent blame the COVID-19 locking down.
41% believe that lockdown and being left at home made them more aware of the services and shops available nearby.
Nearly half (49%) of those surveyed have seen one or more of their favorite shops close down on the high streets as a result.
However, despite the low usage of the nation’s high streets, 49 per cent believe their local high street ticks all the boxes for their needs.
Mike Elliff for NatWest added: “This study on the perfect high street, has revealed a romantic notion around the shops and businesses we still have right on our doorstep.
“We would encourage Brits to cut down on this reminiscing and instead venture out onto the high street and discover their next favourite local store.
“It may be just around the corner. Make the high street the bread and butter of your local community again.”
Top 20 Businesses Brits Would Like to See on the Perfect High Street
- Post office
- Coffee shop/café
- Clothing shops
- Cake shop
- Local butchers
- Card/gift shop
- Hair salon
- Gift shops
- Charity shops
- Farm shop
- Shops for vintage/second-hand
- Shop for arts and crafts
- Zero waste shop/refill location
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