Global shopping destinations seamlessly weave retail into the fabric of city life, day and night.  

The Australian Retailers Association is partnering with the City of Melbourne and Victorian Government to look at how we might take advantage of the increase in foot traffic at the end of the current trading day, by embracing Twilight Trade. 

What is the opportunity?

Pedestrian sensors in the City of Melbourne show 25% – 35% higher foot traffic between 6.00pm – 7.00pm in comparison to 9.00am – 10.00am. Other trends show night-time visitation and spend increasing while daytime visitation is still recovering to pre pandemic 2019 levels.  

Retailers who are not taking advantage of this shift in consumer behaviour may be missing sales and losing the ability to keep customers engaged in the transition between the day and night-time economy. That’s why we are working with government to promote the benefits of Twilight Trade. 

How can retailers get involved?

The ARA continues to advocate strongly for the mainstream adoption of Twilight Trade in key CBD retail precincts. As our project with the City of Melbourne draws to a close, we are keen to hear from retailers about their views on Twilight Trade by taking 2-3 minutes to complete this short survey.

Working with the City of Melbourne, retail precincts and major shopping centres across the city, the ARA has launched an online directory of retailers who have already embraced Twilight Trade.

Information Sessions

Register for upcoming virtual info sessions

About Twilight Trade

The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is partnering with the City of Melbourne and the Victorian Government’s Melbourne City Revitalisation Fund to undertake research and consultation with retailers on opportunities to refine core hours to take advantage of changed patterns of pedestrians, workers, and visitors in the City of Melbourne.  

Specifically, we want to understand the appetite for shifting core trading hours to 10.00am – 7.00pm on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday, and 10.00am – 9.00pm on Thursday and Friday. 

Stage One of the project is now complete, with a preliminary report tabled with the City of Melbourne, outlining the findings from an online survey, interviews and analysis conducted by Melbourne start-up propella-ai

The research concluded that there is demonstrable gap between when consumers are in the city and when retailers are open – with unmet demand between 5.00pm – 7.00pm on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, and 5.00pm – 9.00pm on Friday and Saturday.

Stage Two of the project has now commenced, starting with ‘Live at Errol Street’ in November 2023 and December 2023. This campaign was borne from ARA research into what could support a move to twilight trading.

Working with local traders, the campaign connected consumers with the North and West Melbourne community through happy hour specials, late-night shopping, unique offers from local businesses, and live music ; from talented buskers along Errol St to intimate Sofar Sounds gigs in unexpected spaces.