Struggling retailers linked to poor digital activity according to UK Digital Influence Index

It has been revealed this week that struggling retailers such as ToysRUs, Maplin, New Look and Prezzo have a low rank in the UK Digital Influence Index, which measures the social media activity of all UK retailers in 150K locations. This enables retailers to be benchmarked compared to their competitors.

The Daily Mail reports that icy weather left many stores ‘on the brink’ but further analysis by the High Street campaign #WDYT (What do you think?), reveals that all the retailers who are struggling perform less well than their competitors on social media platforms, as well as on the High Street.

We compared struggling retailers digital activity with industry leaders which revealed some interesting results.

In each example below, the struggling retailer has significantly fewer followers than their competitor. Amazingly, ToysRUs UK has no presence on Instagram despite there being an audience of 800m monthly active Instagram users (Sprout Social). We did find a US based account, with content aimed at an US audience.

As a restaurant, Prezzo’s low following on Instagram is equally surprising. By comparison, Nandos has a high following on every platform.

Rachel Hosie in The Independent said in 2017:

“According to research by Zizzi, 18-35-year-olds spend five whole days a year browsing food images on Instagram, and 30 per cent would avoid a restaurant if their Instagram presence was weak”


Digital influence rank

Instagram followers

Facebook audience

Twitter followers

Maplin 689 1317 45, 000 35,400
Currys PC World 318 11.9m 602,000 110, 000
Audience as % compared to leading brand   0.01% 7.5% 32%
Prezzo 677 1580 175,000 45,800
Nandos 21 235k 4.3m 1.5m
Audience as % compared to leading brand   0.67% 4.06% 3.05%
New Look 162 1.8m 3.1m 366,000
Top Shop 49 9.2m 4.2m 1.3m
Audience as % compared to leading brand   19.6% 74% 28%


Polly Barnfield OBE, founder of Maybe* and the #WDYT campaign says:

“Increasingly retail is a seamless journey from digital to physical. Without doubt retailers have many challenges but we continuously see those that are proactive with their digital activity showing better trending results than those that don’t”.

“Customers are on digital whether retailers choose to be or not. If retailers are not where their customers are, they will sell less. This is crucial to Millenials – see what our  Teenage Shopping Diary reveals”.

Retailers winning in sales and on social media

Improve your digital influence, footfall, and sales with #WDYT

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