According to a new survey commissioned by thebestof.co.uk – the UK’s leading marketer for great local businesses – the majority of Brits believe their local high street is in decline and Supermarkets are responsible.
A further 60 per cent of those that took the survey agree that the Government isn’t doing enough to encourage and support small retailers. The survey comes in contrast to the latest CBI figures which actually suggest high street sales are up, with 58% of retailers saying that the volume of sales rose during October.
‘thebestof Exeter’ owner and local business expert, Linda Bennett, said, “It’s interesting that there is still a strong perception that the high street is in decline – especially when it comes to local retailers and small businesses. With the rise in VAT next year this could become an even bigger issue.’
‘What shop owners need to understand is there are many ways that they can compete with major chains. For example, by setting up special offers specific to the local area, and by building a reputation as a local champion you can really capture the imagination of the community’.
Linda Bennett suggests that there are many things local high street shops can do to boost revenue and footfal, includingl:
1. Build and nurture your database of customers so you can keep in touch with them in creative ways. Email, text and social media are all powerful tools that most local retailers don’t utilise properly, if at all;
2. Provide really fantastic service to create ambassadors for your business amongst local customers;
3. Reward loyalty. So few local businesses do this but it’s easy and it’s core to the strategies of all the big chains like Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Boots. Learn from them;
4. Position your business as one of the best, by shouting about accreditations, certificates and showing off all the great testimonials from your customers. Turning your customers into ‘local celebrities’ can work wonders;
5. Take responsibility. If there are not enough customers coming into your shop then it’s your job to make it happen. Find a way to make yourself interesting and enticing to local people. Sitting back and waiting for government or councils to do something is a surefire recipe for failure.
For more information on the full statistics of the survey please contact Linda Bennett on 01392 248 263.
Member since: 10th July 2012
Hi, I am Dave, I run thebestof Exeter along with my colleagues. If you want to promote your business or event, get in touch with us on 01392 349 130.