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DownYourHighStreet - how it’s helping independent retailers to adapt

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by Startacus Admin


With her high street store closed, some insights from one independent retailer on how adapting her business to an online platform has helped

Amanda Giddy GoatAmanda Alexander is founder of Giddy Goat Toys in Didsbury on the outskirts of Manchester. Until the pandemic forced her to shut her doors the small independent business was ticking over nicely. But the pandemic changed all that.

The majority of Amanda’s sales were made in-store, with children and parents popping in to browse the toys and books before buying. Virtually no sales were made online, with less than £100 pcm being earnt that way.

Amanda had previously joined, a free to join, low commission online marketplace aiming to create the world’s longest high street by connecting communities with commerce and giving the Great British High Street an online presence. 

The DownYourHighStreet platform enables independent retailers to establish a visible online presence without the usual time and cost restraints.

When the lockdown started in March 2020, and Amanda was forced to close her doors, the impact of her decision to join DownYourHighStreet soon became clear.

Amanda explains: “Our sales started to hit £4,000 - £5,000 per month – all direct from! We went from worrying that the business may have to close, to having our best month ever! Funnily enough it’s also meant I had to recruit extra people to help out once we re-opened after the first lockdown as we had to run both a shop and an online business...I hope that we will be able to keep all our staff on going forwards as we continue to serve both local people and deliver to our online customers too.” founder Dan Whytock adds: “Working with indie retailers like Amanda is what we love doing. Every small shop needs an online presence but trying to create and manage that yourself can be prohibitive. Since the start of the first lockdown we’ve signed up over 200 independent retailers to the platform and helped to save many of them from having to close permanently – which would be a disaster for our High Streets.” 

Incidentally, how the retail sector and the High Street responds in our post-pandemic economy is a topic that we’ll be exploring at our upcoming LEVELUP event, more details of which will be announced soon. If you'd like to be kept up to date with this event, simply register your details and we'll kep you posted.

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Published on: 25th March 2021

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