The average UK consumer is feeling the credit crunch, as new research from Experian shows a 1.5% decline in shoppers visiting the high street. This drop on last years figures has been put down to an “economic slowdown” and the lack of spare cash at the end of the month.

Matt Sherwood, senior economist at Experian said: “Rising living costs are starting to bite into disposable incomes and, with below-inflation wage settlements revealing themselves in monthly pay packets, people are now experiencing the financial reality of economic slowdown.”

This is also leading to an increase in people looking for cheaper alternatives on the Internet. The Online Competitive Intelligence Service, Hitwise report that the search for keyword “vouchers” has quadrupled over the last 12 months.