Latest figures for bread, cakes, cookies and morning goods sold through high street bakeries paint a mixed picture of people visiting bakery shops more frequently and buying more products, but spending less.

The research showed that, in the 12 weeks leading up to the pre-Christmas December spike, people visited bakeries 16% more than in 2007, but that spend had declined nearly 9%. This contrasted with spend across the total bakery market, including supermarkets, which rose 10%. However, bakeries outperformed the market on number of packs purchased per visit and frequency of visits.

The data confirmed that when people did shop at a baker, 96% made a purchase. It also indicated that bakers can influence further purchases, as one in three consumers made their decision to purchase while in the shop.

Ivor Mckane, business unit director for artisan at BakeMark UK, who commissioned the research, said this highlighted the need for stronger point-of-sale promotions, seasonal items and till point impulse buys.

He said: "Economising is not the same as down-trading - consumers are still looking for quality. With one in three shoppers making their purchase decision in-store, being competitive on key lines will attract them to spend on other items."