Consumers Move Away from Supermarkets Again

Until the beginning of June, Central American countries reported a rise in the number of people who moved to locations identified as supermarkets or pharmacies, however, in recent weeks the trend was reversed.

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

According to data from Google incorporated into the "System for monitoring markets and the economic situation in Central American countries", developed by the Trade Intelligence Unit of CentralAmericaData, in Panama, where due to the spread of covid-19 the measures of isolation and restriction of mobility have begun to harden in some areas, it has become evident that as of June 24th the visits to establishments identified as supermarkets or pharmacies have fallen.




In Panama, as of June 7, there was a 36% drop in the level of concentration of people in this type of establishment, compared to the levels registered in the last week of February. However, as of July 10, there was a decline, as the indicator already reported -44% variation. 

The cases of Costa Rica and Guatemala are similar to Panama's, since as of June 19 the drops in the levels of concentration of people in supermarkets amounted to 19% and 34%, in that order. A review of the figures as of July 10 shows a decline in consumer visits to these types of stores, reporting variations of -30% in the Costa Rican market and -37% in the Guatemalan market.

In El Salvador, between July 1 and July 10, the concentration levels of consumers in commercial areas decreased, since the variation compared to the period prior to the quarantine went from -29% to -34%. In Honduras, the indicator went from -38% to -41% between 20 June and 10 July.

In Nicaragua, where isolation and mobility restriction measures have been practically non-existent, a slight upward trend in visits to supermarkets is reported.

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More on this topic

Consumers Return to Supermarkets

September 2020

As part of the gradual reopening of commercial activities, an increase in the number of people who have moved to locations identified as supermarkets or pharmacies was reported in Central American countries during August.

Due to the quarantines decreed by the covid-19 outbreak, in mid-April the concentration of people in residential areas of cities reached its highest level, but in recent months this trend has been reversed and consumers have visited more stores. During August, the process of returning to supermarkets accelerated in most markets.

Consumers Begin to Return to Supermarkets

June 2020

In recent weeks, Central American countries have reported an increase in the number of people who have moved to locations identified as supermarkets or pharmacies.

Due to the quarantines decreed by the governments of the region because of the covid-19 outbreak, in mid-April the concentration of people in residential areas of the cities registered its maximum level, but in the last weeks this trend has started to reverse, as consumers have visited more shops.

Confinement in Central America: Downward Trend Persists

May 2020

Because of the restrictions on mobility decreed in the region's cities, since mid-April, when the concentration of people in residential areas peaked, the trend has been downward.

According to the "System for Monitoring the Markets and Economic Situation in Central American Countries", prepared by the Trade Intelligence Unit of CentralAmericaData, since the effects of the crisis generated by the spread of covid-19 in the region began to be felt and, more specifically, since the measures restricting mobility were tightened, visits to shops in Central American countries have been drastically reduced and the mobility of consumers in residential areas has rebounded.

Visits to Quarantined Shops: Is the Trend Reversed?

April 2020

Between February 2020 and Easter Week, visits to shops decreased between 40% and 90% in Central American countries, but since April 13 a change in the trend has been observed, reflecting a greater movement of people to shops and other businesses.

According to the "Information System for the Impact Analysis of Covid-19 on Business", prepared by the Trade Intelligence Unit of CentralAmericaData, Costa Rica is the country with the most pronounced change in trend, since as of April 12th the reported drop in physical visits to stores was 79%, while on April 17th the reported reduction was 57% from the levels prior to the health crisis.

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