Retail Support Scheme Launch Meeting
The SBA encourages retailers to get involved with the Council's Retail Support Scheme:
Tuesday 21st January at 6pm at the Stonehaven Community Centre
Bath Street, Stonehaven AB39 2DH
Aberdeenshire Council recognises the importance of independent shops as an integral part of Town Centres and understands the importance of engaging with local businesses to help generate sales and provide support to strengthen this critical component of the town centre economy. A successful LEADER application is providing funding to deliver a retail support scheme to the towns of Stonehaven, Banchory and Huntly in 2020.
The Project Aim
The Retail Support Scheme aims to strengthen retail businesses through a combination of one to one consultancy and group workshops to make small improvements, whether physical (display & merchandising), virtual (web presence) or skills development. To complement this scheme, services can also be secured from Business Gateway to offer free, detailed e-commerce advice. This will benefit those businesses that are advised to improve their online presence, following the one-to-one sessions.
The aim of the project is for the consultants to help the participating businesses by providing tools to achieve progress and profit, and to encourage a collaborative approach to pull retailers together to create an improved town offering and a strong retail forum.
The Retailer group were established in 1999 and work throughout Scotland, the UK and overseas. They are made up of a team of 14 experienced consultants lead by Gordon Bell, who specialise in developing retail business structures for new on-line and retail businesses, supporting also the development of established businesses. Their expertise lies in operational processes, business structures and people management. To find out more information on The Retailer you can visit: www.theretailer.co.uk
An initial meeting will take place on Tuesday 21st January at 6pm at the Stonehaven Community Centre, Bath Street, Stonehaven, AB39 2DH. This will inform retailers on the program. The deadline for signing up for the project will be 29th January. Anyone unable to attend the meeting should contact Heather Macrae by email; firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01467533297 or email@example.com or call 01467537477. Gordon Bell who will be leading the project for Stonehaven will then schedule in a one to one meeting for each participating business. The consultant services will be broken into manageable chunks and their support will come in a mix of retail reviews/assessments, personal one to one visits, individual mentoring and a visual merchandise workshop.
The following areas are topics The Retailer would cover with each business. The most important part of the exercise is that they will listen to the specific needs of each retailer, and will identify their existing strengths and abilities. It is essential that they highlight skills in individual retailers that can be shared with others, so that when the project is finished there is a strong retail business team with a depth of knowledge and expertise within Stonehaven.
- General Housekeeping standards in the shop and stockrooms
- Purchasing of products
- Caliber and knowledge of the business owner
- General layout
- Strengths and weaknesses of the business
- Supplier base, payment terms, mark up, accounting practices
- Marketing and promotional stance
- Points of difference, local competition
- Identify self-help low cost solutions that will help them to improve their business
- Working practices and cycles of work.
- Caliber, knowledge and appearance of the staff
- Collaboration with business neighbours
- Sales efficiency
- Key Performance Indicators
- Mannequins, visual props available and general condition
- Visual presentation and standards
- Product merchandising
- Standard of graphics and ticketing
- Shop environment and shop fronts
The Retailer will also run three workshops over the course of the project (dependent on demand) for certain topics. In addition, they will assist in strengthening the town’s retail forum bringing in new ideas to increase footfall and vitality to the area.
Spaces are limited. If demand is high, the scheme will prioritise town centre retail businesses.
Details of the scheme and registration of interest can be made no later than29th January to: