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New research on BIDs and the 'new normal'


Working in collaboration with Nottingham BID and NEF Consulting, British BIDs today unveils new research, which explores the impacts of COVID-19 for the BID industry. 

Titled 'BIDs and their 'new normal: Their response to the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020', the research is underpinned by in-depth research into the wider perceptions of Coronavirus on society, business and the economy, along with a qualitative sample group of 40+ BIDs and a detailed telephone survey of 500 consumers in Nottingham. 

Available now, the research allows BIDs and their boards to see how the industry has responded during the COVID-19 pandemic, and allows individual BID managers to leverage the findings as they plan to adjust to the ‘new normal’. 

Read the full research report here.

Key findings:

  • There is a fundamental shift in the way that people are thinking about how they live their lives, having had time to reflect and re-evaluate during lockdown. 
  • People are accelerating the trend towards digital services, leading to reductions in spending and a general sentiment towards a slower pace of life. 
  • Expected spike of impact based on the timing of the withdrawal of government support.
  • Fewer retailers are anticipating to return to ‘normalised’ trading levels until May 2021, at the earliest.
  • High streets are perceived to require a significant reduction in retail space but expectations are that this is much less likely to happen due to fragmented ownership and lack of funding options. 
  • Community is the new anchor. The role of anchor buildings and spaces will become a key part of international, national and local conversations. 
  • The creation of safe and welcoming spaces will be critical to maximising the benefit of the footfall that exists and attracting more people 
  • A new level of partnership working will help businesses stay afloat.
  • National levy payers expect a BID to build up and carry some reserves. 
  • BIDs expect online and digital communication to continue to be a strong focus of communication. 
  • The ‘experiential’ becomes a key emphasis for BIDs under the ‘new normal’.
  • People will stick by the businesses that helped their communities during the pandemic, resulting in a boom in the so-called ‘kindness economy’.
  • BIDs need to rethink their next business plan as residential conversations expect to dominate retail provision.
  • City centre users in Nottingham see trips to cinema, theatre, hairdressers and meeting friends as the most anticipated events for interacting with their city centre.  

READ THE RESEARCH REPORT.


The research also conducted 5 focus groups of 44 Business Improvement Districts - representing thousands of businesses between them up and down the country - and found big opportunities post-COVID-19.


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