Our increased use of technology has altered the landscape of shopping. We have seen decreases in the sales of high street shopping, as exemplified by the drop in shoppers for post-Christmas sales, as well as a continually dropping use of cash.


In the lead up to Christmas, stores saw a decrease in sales, which even continued past Christmas until the huge annual Boxing day sales, on which stores saw their footfall decrease by 4% compared to that of last year. However, the more noticeable decline was on during the earlier hours of the day, where sales declined by up to 8.6% compared to last year. This could suggest that people are making fewer trips that are just focused on shopping: could this also reveal an underlying hint in their changing attitudes towards retail? Some have suggested that this decrease could be due to concern for the environment that is becoming more prevalent, however, there may be an influence from the increased online shopping that has hit these brick and mortar stores.


We are also becoming an increasingly cashless society. There have been increases in the number of transactions carried out with debit or credit cards, though far more interesting is the number of people now using mobile payments, which is up to 83% in young people. Eventually we may catch up to China, where use of apps like WeChat and Alipay have made cash almost redundant, some stores not even accepting cash anymore. However, this may have wider implications of society, past the convenience that it provides. For example, there are some for prefer the anonymity that can be kept in cash payments, which is important in the frequently questionable data security. Additionally, there is a large impact on homeless people or those unable to access banking services, who may be increasingly unable to access goods. The shift may not be a development in the end.