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The recent addition of the interactive Good Ideas Shop in Nottingham city centre has been a boost to the UK high street.

Social media giant, Meta – the parent company of Facebook and Instagram – opened four Good Idea Shops across the UK back in September, including one in Nottingham. The pop-up store was opened to showcase local businesses through interactive window displays, powered by QR codes for customers to scan and engage with on their mobile phones. 

The Good Ideas Shop also highlighted the importance of using social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram to reach new audiences and attract new customers. Whilst these stores remained open to support businesses over the Christmas period and closed in early January their presence no doubt resulted in increased followers, an increase in website traffic as well as the opportunity for data collection and profiling which can be used for other marketing purposes such as email marketing for the businesses that were featured. 

 This further underlines the importance for bricks and mortar businesses to embrace the benefits of digital marketing as part of their overall marketing strategy to increase footfall, retail sales and customer engagement. 

According to Facebook’s Global State of Small Businesses Report, 99% of UK businesses are SME’s, and they employ 50% of the workforce. Reporting in September 2021, nearly 40% of UK small businesses said they increased their rate of sale – nearly twice the global average. This shows that the high street certainly has a future – if they have an integrated approach to their marketing. 

The East Midlands has seen a recent resurgence in high street brands recovering from the pandemic by taking on a new online presence. Chesterfield’s Digital High Street project has offered over 100 local businesses the opportunity to get free support to move their business online to support their bricks and mortar store’s trading efforts and the impact of this initiative has prevented many local retailers from throwing in the towel. 

Matt Wheatcroft, Managing Director at Purpose Media, had his say on Facebook’s presence in the East Midlands and the future of the high street: 

“Even though it’s vital that businesses have an online presence to grow their customer base and sales, shoppers still want to see and engage with the goods they are purchasing. 

“Facebook has championed local businesses by standing alongside them on the high street, and this should be a boost to businesses both in the East Midlands and across the UK.” 

 Purpose Media was chosen by Chesterfield Borough Council and the East Midlands Chamber to develop websites and digital marketing consultancy for all businesses seeking business advice and grant support as part of the Digital High Street scheme.  

 Find out how your business can benefit from an improved online presence by getting in touch.

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