Why all business owners have a duty to support their local, independent retailers

It’s no secret that UK retailers, and particularly smaller, independent businesses, need all the help they can get. High street footfall has dramatically declined in recent years, consumer confidence is low, household budgets are under more pressure than ever before. Research produced by bira (British Independent Retailers Association) in partnership with O2 showed that 16% of all independent retailers fear they will not survive 2013 if things don’t improve. In the recent budget the chancellor ignored 1000s of signatures on a “Fair Rates for Retail” petition, put together by BRC (British Retail Consortium) and Retail Week, ploughing on with a business rates rise that will cost the struggling retail sector an additional £175 million in taxation on top of the 2012 rates increase, the highest in over 20 years, that drained £375 million out the sector…

If Independent Retailers decrease in number high street vacancy rates will dramatically increase

The Local Data Company published findings in early 2013 that showed that Independent Retailer numbers declined in the 2nd half of 2012, for the first time in 2 years. The loss of more shops from our high streets and village centres is a very real risk. If something isn’t done to help re-connect local consumers with local businesses, to bring them, and their spending, back, it is forecast that the UK high street vacancy rate could climb from the current average of c. 14% to an alarmingly high 17%.

Support for Independent Retail campaign

Campaigns such Support for Independent Retail can educate consumers, helping them to understand the positive impact that their custom can have on local traders. It is the responsibility of all small business owners to support their community. Together we can kick-start the process of changing people’s shopping habits, reminding people that they stand to lose many fantastic shops in their area if they never visit them and never spend with them.

The value of your £1 when spent with local, independent businesses

FSB, in partnership with CLES, proved that your £1 spent locally is worth 10 times more to your local economy than when it is spent out of town or with an online giant, so, before you turn to Amazon or head to Tesco out of habit, stop, think, how could you make a difference by spending your cash with local, independent businesses? Make the Indie Retail pledge – see http://retailchampion.wordpress.com/2012/12/14/support-for-independent-retail/ 

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About Clare Bailey

Clare Bailey, The Retail Champion (formerly Clare Rayner), is one of the most well-known and respected retail experts in the UK. With unrivalled knowledge in retail, high streets and consumer matters, she offers unbiased, independent content – whether engaged as a professional speaker, for broadcast media, or for a written feature. Clare is a business woman, entrepreneur and founder of several small businesses. Having been born into a family of successful business owners, it was inevitable that she’d eventually jump off the corporate treadmill and step out on her own! Today her brand portfolio includes The Retail Champion, The Retail Conference, the Future High Street Summit and the Support for Independent Retail campaign. In addition, she is co-founder of Mobaro Retail UK and a non-exec director of Beed Virtual Assistant Services. Having started her career as a fast-track store management trainee for McDonalds, she went on to work with leading retailers such as M&S, Dixons and Argos. She moved swiftly into management roles before being headhunted into senior consulting roles with global software giant SAP, and international management consulting brand, Accenture. Her corporate background in senior retail, consulting and technology roles, coupled with her experience of creating and running her own business, has enabled her to be equally capable whether consulting to global brands or micro businesses. This unique blend has not only positioned her as a leading expert in all things retail, but has enabled her to add meaningful commentary and insight to the debate around the future of the high street, and, how technology is driving fundamental change in the way consumers, and businesses, interact. Clare has become an influential voice in her field, which has resulted in her becoming a regular media contributor and sought-after conference speaker. Often seen on Good Morning Britain, BBC Breakfast, Sky News, and Chanel 5 (to name a few), Clare speaks on a myriad of retail, high street and consumer issues – but is particular adept when it comes to explaining the context behind retail trading results, newly released data, and government stats, in a palatable and informative manner. In addition to broadcast and conference speaking, Clare is the proud author of two best-selling business books published by Kogan Page - The Retail Champion: 10 Steps to Retail Success, published July 2012 and How to Sell to Retail: The Secrets of Getting Your Product to Market, published February 2013. She has provided contributions to various academic texts, including Retail Marketing Management (published by Pearson). With an engaging, conversational yet informative style, Clare writes for press and content agencies, providing features, articles, blogs and opinion pieces as well as contributions to white papers and reports. However, when the situation demands a more serious style, Clare can deliver - In 2016 she wrote an extensive report for a major insurance and risk law firm, as a retail expert witness, to support a public liability suit. She found that project particularly enjoyable as it played well to her strengths – assimilating large amounts of data and information, identifying the key points and articulating that in an understandable manner. When not on TV or speaking at conferences, Clare’s “day job” sees her supporting consumer-facing businesses through her consultancy services. When asked to describe what she most loves about retail consulting it is typically the opportunity to “dig deep”, getting “under the bonnet”, in order to leverage the business data to uncover the insights that lead to “lightbulb moments”. She also loves working on business change programmes that centre on improving the processes and systems to increase profitability by supporting more rapid, better informed decision making, improving the customer experience, or simply by become more efficient and streamlined. In this respect she considers herself a “business engineer” with a brain that works like a relational database! Due to her years of experience, her logical, objective approach, her quick, rational thinking, she is known for being able to cut through complexity, seeing right through to the crux of issues, finding creative solutions that others may have overlooked. As if all that wasn’t enough, Clare is a working mum, juggling a home life in rural Lincolnshire with her partner, their 5 kids, 4 cats, and geriatric Labrador! For all enquiries, contact Clare directly on 01727 238890 or email champion@retailchampion.co.uk.
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One Response to Why all business owners have a duty to support their local, independent retailers

  1. bedebuys says:

    Reblogged this on bed-e-buys and commented:
    We need all the support we can get!

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