Two local businesswomen have introduced a new way of supporting small companies through a Virtual Christmas Fair
For many small businesses, the Christmas period has a significant impact on annual profits, with the holiday season often accounting for the majority of sales. Jenette Hardy and Danielle Barker have first-hand experience of the struggles of running small businesses during the Covid-19 pandemic and they have been reaching out to help and support others during this critical time.
Jenette Hardy, who runs Hardy Soft Play Hire based near Sedbergh in Cumbria, has seen her event entertainment bookings drop by 97%.
“Due to the restrictions in place regarding gatherings we are unable to offer most of our services. We have diversified and created a range of sweet treat gift boxes and needed an effective selling platform. As the regular Christmas fairs are unable to operate, we determined that a virtual fair was the best way to support small businesses like ours and boost sales”.
Danielle Barker is passionate about small business. She owns ‘Red Beau’ an eco-friendly party supplies company based in Arkholme, Lancashire.
“Notably small businesses have suffered huge financial losses during the pandemic and families are struggling. Research shows that £10 spent with a local independent shop leads to an additional £50 going back into the local economy, We knew we could use our marketing expertise to give small businesses a boost, so by helping these businesses we are also helping their communities.”
The Virtual Christmas Fair offers a wealth of original, artisan gift ideas allowing shoppers to support small businesses when their favourite boutiques are closed. The group offers everything from handcrafted Christmas decorations and seasonal foods, to upcycled gifts, exclusive illustrations, and virtual Santa visits. Saving shoppers precious time when it comes to hunting out new and interesting gift ideas the 160 stallholders are benefitting from an impressive rise in demand.
With almost 5,000 members, stallholders showcase their items to future customers who can browse from the comfort of their own sofa. The group will run up to the 20th of December 2020.
The group can be found on Facebook ‘Virtual Christmas Fair-Support a Small Business’