Last Week’s UK Mobility Index (w/c 25th May 2020)

June 2020

Last week’s (w/e 25th May) Mobility Index was 66.9, up from 65.7 the previous week, versus the pre-Covid baseline of 100, according to data from our mobile partner Three UK.  So overall UK mobility is just under 67% of ‘normal’ and increasing. Warm weather and people taking longer trips outside of their neighbourhood seem to have been the underlying causes of the continued increase in movement. Over the last few weeks, we have seen people increasingly gravitating to areas with open, green space outside of city-centres due to the weather but we have also seen trips taken longer than 2km steadily creep up from an index of 69 in April to 85 last week. People had been very centred on their local neighbourhood but are increasingly venturing further than their home locale.

Overall, in the UK hardly any postal sector saw a decrease in terms of movement last week. Movement in city centre areas focussed on retail & leisure (Bullring in Birmingham, London’s West End etc.) or area of industry (Canary Wharf etc.) have remained understandably low. However, some increases in movement have even been seen in the last week in these areas e.g. the Central Retail District in Manchester was up around 3% week on week) albeit at around 30% of normal movement. This could however be further evidence of people travelling further, seeking alternatives to laps of the park, rather than them seeking lockdown retail therapy.

Where city centre movement has remained subdued, we have seen steady gains boost some areas to near normal amounts of movement. Within Greater London, Wood Green, Croydon, Colindale and Neasden have some pockets at above normal levels which seem to concentrate around green spaces. Elsewhere, Bristol seems the most ‘normal’ major city, in terms of movement overall scoring just shy of 59% of normal movement. Whilst many more OOH impacts would usually be available in more central urban areas, we estimate a less central London area, like Wood Green, still offered almost 2 million DOOH impacts on roadside Digital 6 sheets alone last week. Similar could be said for impacts in Bristol as a whole. Moreover, there is a unique context to each of those impacts as people enjoyed the sun away from climbing up the walls at home, putting them in a more receptive mood for comms.

Population movement has shifted from its normal; people are still OOH but not always in the areas we were used to them frequenting. We are using the best and most recent data and tools to understand where audiences can be found and why, as we adapt to shifting patterns of movement. In doing so we hope to reveal valuable opportunities for advertisers to reach their target audiences via OOH.

With schools and other parts of the UK opening from this week we expect more significant shifts in the mobility index to be revealed in next week’s data and as a result, more opportunities to open up for advertisers.