What Queenslanders are buying during COVID crisis

Queensland consumers are spending less time in stores but are shopping "with more purpose", while retailers are now seeing 'fight or flight' buyers.

Places such as DFO Brisbane have had a surge in cost-conscious shoppers, but are selling 20 times more pasta-makers as people ramp up their entertaining at home.

Retail expert QUT professor Gary Mortimer said there are now two types of shoppers - the fight or flight consumers.

"Flight people are traditionally cocooning at home … lots of people are cooking at home, downloading recipes, watching Netflix and really socially isolating and that could be because they're genuinely concerned about going to centres," he said.

"They're shopping online and really the economically budgeting focused consumer.

"The fight consumer are ones that say despite the doom and gloom, I'm going to go out and spend … it would be why bigger purchases like jet skis, motorbikes, car sales are going up."

Fashion influencer Millie Rose Bannister goes shopping at DFO. Picture: Peter Wallis
Fashion influencer Millie Rose Bannister goes shopping at DFO. Picture: Peter Wallis

Brisbane Airport DFO centre manager Emma Chettleburgh said when the pandemic began, people were focused on active and loungewear, but customers were now shopping with purpose.

"It's now more around that health and active lifestyle that people are really indulging at the moment - so buying hiking boots, running shoes," she said.

She said home entertainment items like cocktail makers and glasses alongside kitchenware were still in high demand.

Converse ANZ Retail Sales Manager Brett McKinney said that since reopening his stores in June he has noticed people are purchasing multiple items at a time which could be attributed to the ongoing climate of uncertainty.

Brisbane shopper Milly Bannister said she prefers to come to stores to shop across multiple categories.

"I don't do a lot of shopping online as I really enjoy coming into a centre to shop - its kind of like a game to find the best pieces at the best prices."

Originally published as What we're buying during COVID crisis


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