NFRN COO Greg Deacon told SLR magazine that independent retailers are the undoubted stars of the coronavirus epidemic and that now is the time to be supporting local shops.

Across the UK independent retailers are adapting their businesses to combat the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on themselves and their customers.

After adapting to the pandemic through home delivery, click and collect, in-store safety measures and having clear communication with their local communities, independent retailers have successfully increased consumer demand locally.

The SLR article reads:

“Whether big or small, brands will need to pivot their own channel strategies and recognise that what was done previously was inadequate, outdated, and ill-weighted.”

“Clearly, for manufacturers, winning with independents is the most challenging strategic play, due to its highly fragmented, difficult to influence and, quite frankly, diverse network of stores. This has contributed to quicker and easier wins through other channels.  The question all brand leaders now face is ‘what will be the cost of inaction by not having a LOCAL strategy?’”

“My recommendations to suppliers everywhere are recognise Local shops, act now, pivot away and dispel previous myths and outcomes about the channel to move forward.  Failing to recognise the emergence and importance of the local shop to you will contribute to a decline in distribution, visibility and sales, along with retailer advocacy over time. The latter contributes to a successful and symbiotic relationship that ensures your products are promoted and sold through a channel that is frequented, appreciated, respected and loved by thousands of consumers every day.”

“Forget CTN, c-store, supermarket and forecourt as classifications. The defining word we all need to be focused on is “LOCAL”. Everything we now consider or do must be local and Covid has accelerated this to the benefit of independent shops everywhere.  Brand, retailer, consumer – it’s time to be LOCAL.”

Read SLR Magazine