July 28, 2020 /
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Scary hygiene statistics

Retailers are trying to do the right thing by providing hand sanitiser stations. But consumers seem oblivious.

Only 17% of people in the COVID-19 world are sanitising.

We’ll be releasing more details of our 2,521 observations in the coming week. Brands (Australian) observed were Bunnings, Coles, Chemist Warehouse, Kmart, and Officeworks. The brands are trying to do the right thing. But consumers are not.

We also look at whether staff were directing traffic to sanitise, what effect that has, and the effect of herd mentality (not in the immunisation sense).

Scary statistics.

Let those who have not sinned cast the first stone.

May 21, 2020 /
Comments Off on Press Release COVID Sentiment

Press Release COVID Sentiment

For release 12:00

Date: 21 May 2020

Secret Consumer COVID Shopping Habits

What consumers really think about our new world.

Wollongong (NSW) – 20 May 2020:   Service Integrity, a leading mystery shopping and research company, today published COVID-19 nationwide retail survey results. The study was conducted to answer the questions many retailers are asking about new world buying behaviours.  

Service Integrity employs over 30,000 mystery shoppers throughout Australia and has worked with Australia’s largest retail brands since 2003.

How have buying habits changed?

Of the 680 respondents, only 18% of people said COVID-19 would NOT affect their buying habits but 41% said the changes would be at significant or change their habits completely. The results are similar for men and women, but 29% of young people (18-25) believe their buying habits will change completely, whereas only 12% of the 50+ group believe their buying habits will change completely.

Are people confident in crowded locations?

62% of people are not confident in crowded locations. There is a significant difference between men and women, 55% of men are not confident whereas 65% of women are not comfortable in crowded locations. The least confident people are those in states where COVID flareups have occurred with 89% of Tasmanians and 67% of Victorians not confident but only 54% of people in W.A. lacking confidence in crowded spaces.

The big spenders have gone online

Lack of confidence and restrictions has changed our online buying habits significantly. 36% of people have diverted some spending to online. The move is most pronounced for people earning over $150,000 per year where 46% of respondents have diverted to online. Again, the states with the COVID-19 flareups have the biggest diversion to online with 44% of Tasmanians and 41% of Victorians diverting online, but only 18% of South Australians and 29% of West Australians diverting online.

Where to in the future?

Overall, 37% of people will now shop more online with 52% of those earning over $150,000 per year and only 33% of those earning under $50,000 per year increasing online spend. Unsurprisingly, 64% of those under 25 years of age will increase their online spending but 30% of the over 50s choosing to do so.

“A 30% increase in online spending is a massive move in shopping habits” Steven Di Pietro Director Service Integrity Mystery Shopping.


What does this mean?

The impact on future retailing is seismic. Across all sectors the change will affect at least 30% of people, whether it be by age, income, gender or even location. Most importantly, if retailers want to maintain their retail stores against this force, they must give consumers confidence that public places will be safe.

What you do about it?

Retailers need to go over the top by showing they respect the customer’s concerns and safety. As the rules are being re-written, retailers need to also check that customers and staff are adhering to the new rules so they don’t destroy their brand, or worse still, make people sick. Retailers must do more than just issue a policy, they must monitor relentlessly using tools such as COVID Audits and Mystery Shops.

For more information:

Steven Di Pietro

Service Integrity Research and Mystery Shopping




May 12, 2020 /
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The latest State COVID rules for Australia

Person holding soapUpdated May 12, 2020

How do you know if your stores are complying with good COVIC-19 hygiene practices? No-one want to break the rules, no-one wants people to get sick and EVERYONE wants customers to feel confident in their stores.

The new Australian Retail trading rules.

NSW – From 15 May

Cafes, restaurants and retailers – 10 pax


QLD – 16 May

10 pax in bricks-and-mortar locations

SA – 11 May

Alcohol-free outdoor dining at cafes and restaurants.

WA – 18 May

Cafes and restaurants – 20 Pax
1 person/sqm and sanitiser required.

TAS – 18 May

Cafes, restaurants and retailers – 10 pax

NT – 15 May

Reopening of restaurants, cafes and bars – provided bar-goers purchase food.
2 Hour limit on indoor activities – business require safety plan to ensure good hygiene.

Are you ready? Book a one-on-one if you want to know how to protect your operations.

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels