Thousands of local shops struggling
As non-essential shops were finally allowed to reopen two weeks ago, owners were hoping for a surge in support but new research from national loyalty scheme, My VIP Card has discovered that 40% of these local businesses have actually been quieter than usual pre-pandemic trading as over half (51%) of shoppers are reluctant to return to the high street.
The loyalty scheme has recently launched the ‘Shop Small to Help Out’ campaign and vows to promote thousands of local shops and services to its huge network of UK shoppers. As part of the campaign any small businesses can now sign up for free and will benefit from being promoted to a huge national audience of shoppers keen to support local and small business whilst taking advantage of thousands of amazing discounts.
The research also uncovered that 1 in 5 local shops haven’t been able to reopen yet due to costs such as restocking and ensuring they follow social distance regulations which is hugely concerning for local businesses across the UK. Out of all the businesses surveyed only a third stated that they were busier than during normal periods and had seen a significant benefit from reopening after lockdown.
The loyalty scheme launched a crowdfunding campaign on Crowdcube to raise additional funds to expand the service and offer further support to even more small businesses last week. Within 5 days of being live the £70K target has already been achieved and they are now looking to overfund to support business partners further and allowing further investors an additional 25 days to invest in the market leading solution.
Maddy Alexander-Grout, founder of My VIP Card, added, “I created My VIP Card to help local high street and communities across the UK and our new survey really highlights that these small businesses have never needed your support more. We are urging everyone to download our app and get out and support these amazing local businesses. By bringing them all together on our platform we are allowing them to compete with larger chains, attract a bigger audience and hopefully encourage many shoppers to shop small and benefit from some amazing discounts.”