Last week’s (w/e 12th June) UK Mobility Index was 68.1, up from 67.2 the previous week, versus the lockdown baseline of 100, according to data from our mobile partner Three UK. So, overall UK mobility is now just over 68% of ‘normal’ and still increasing. In recent weeks we have seen the increase in movement come mostly from more suburban areas whereas this week we have seen some of the more central areas start to contribute to the overall increase in mobility.
Suburban areas, that previously saw week on week gains, have plateaued overall, although in some areas, such as Bromley or Colindale in London, they were actually higher than their pre-lockdown ‘normal’ movement. The general plateauing of movement was expected as a result of last week’s mixed weather along with the lack of any further changes to lockdown restrictions. What was harder to predict was the increases in movement of certain pockets of central urban areas despite their overall low mobility index scores. Many central urban areas increased their movement by 8% week on week which, although admittedly from a low base, is a much higher increases than we have seen in previous weeks for central urban areas. We are beginning to see new ground being broken.
Nationally, there were almost four times the number of postal sectors that saw a large week on week increase than postal sectors that saw a large decrease week on week. At a regional level, all but four (London, Midlands, Yorkshire, Central Scotland) of UK regions had a higher than the overall (68.1) mobility index with the Border area (just below Scotland) becoming the first region to break through the 80% mobility index since the lockdown began.
At a city level there were some unexpected but significant gains. In the Bishopsgate area of London (a finance and tech hub) there was an increase of 8% week on week, although off a low base. Given this is more a commercial area than residential, the large gain seems significant as it (and similar areas) had plateaued over the past few weeks. Stratford, usually a retail & leisure hub in east London, rose to over 40% of its normal movement for the first time since lockdown. This could see a further significant increase this week as non-essential retailers open up. Elsewhere, central areas of Manchester and Birmingham, that enjoyed a mix of retail, leisure and commercial footfall pre-lockdown, saw week on week increases of between 3% to 5%. So, as well as the overall UK mobility increasing, the drivers of that growth has also changed to include more central urban areas.
From an OOH perspective, the mobility index of 68.1 resulted in 1.3 million additional impacts across UK digital six sheets alone. This effect is replicated nationally with every UK region increasing the number of available weekly impacts. Given that digital six sheet impacts are just one part of the overall OOH universe it is fair to say there are more eyeballs available to see all OOH ads each week. So, now is a great time to start booking your OOH campaigns.