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Nextdoor Insights Series #5: Our changing spending habits

May 12, 2021 • Written by Nextdoor Enterprise Team

The pandemic changed nearly everything about our daily lives — especially how we handled our finances.

In the past year, online shopping surged. Neighbours invested more money into their homes and became more conscious of where they shopped. They also saved, putting some plans and purchases on hold.

As vaccinations increase, businesses reopen, and vacation plans emerge, we examine how COVID-19 impacted UK neighbours’ consumption habits. Find the full report here.

Series highlights:

Neighbours developed new spending habits


Attitudes about shopping changed during the pandemic, with neighbours shopping more frequently than before. Online purchases surged, and neighbours bought more electronics, furniture, healthcare items, and cars. While the online boom continues across categories, neighbours seem to crave the in-store experience again. One-fourth of neighbours say they rely more on local businesses now than they did before the pandemic.

Media consumption changed


More time at home meant neighbours spent more time on their smartphones and consuming media. Online TV became a bigger part of daily life. Gaming and music streaming were increasingly popular. Nearly 40% of neighbours said they were spending more than two hours a day on their phones at the height of the outbreak, though they are selective in which social apps they use. For instance, around 50% of neighbours haven’t visited Instagram and Pinterest in the last month.

On the horizon: Vacations, restaurants, and more


Travel plans were hampered by the pandemic, but more than 1 in 4 neighbours say they’re very likely to book a vacation in 2021. Neighbours also look forward to going to restaurants, bars, salons, and movie theaters post-lockdown. They’re planning major purchases in the coming months that include electronics, travel, and home improvement items.  

Neighbours are more conscious shoppers


Neighbours put unnecessary spending on hold in 2020. They acted financially cautious and built up cash reserves they’ll be looking to spend as their confidence grows. Neighbours are also making more conscious efforts to support local businesses and expect brands to behave in a more socially and environmentally responsible manner.

2020 changed neighbours’ consumption habits and expectations in ways that may continue long after the pandemic. As we move forward, we’re reminded how our neighbours help us get through difficult times. We can continue to plug into our neighbourhoods, support local businesses and get involved through Nextdoor and campaigns like the #KINDchallenge.

Missed our past Insights series? Find them below - 

Insights series #1: In an era of social distancing, neighbourliness is on the rise 

Insights series #2: Strength in neighbours

Insights series #3: It starts with a wave

Insights series #4: 2020 brought us home


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