Shop Local: Give a little love to your local high street
During the pandemic, many of us turned to online shopping. It was a way to avoid the stress of supermarkets, the hassle of wearing masks, to limit close contact and just made getting the essentials that little bit easier.
Of course, large chains stepped up to the mark and offered more delivery slots to adapt to the new climate. We would expect nothing less from the retail giants.
But what was even more impressive, was how smaller, local shops adapted to provide their communities with fast, efficient and personalised service - and did so over such a short period of time. Arguably, while the big chains were focused on the bottom line, the smaller shops were focusing on supporting their local shoppers, their regulars, and those near and dear to them.
Running a shop in a local town, just like the Maple shops in Porthcawl, is more than just running a business. We get to know our customers. You become our friends, and we want to do everything we can to help you. That’s why we did everything possible to provide our local community with the opportunity to treat themselves and others, and make lockdown brighter one chocolate at a time. Through quickly increasing our delivery offering, we helped our community to celebrate each and every occasion, from birthdays to anniversaries, would-be-wedding-days to treat-yourself-Tuesdays, with unique gifts that are as special as the person you’re buying for - and we loved every second! Being able to give our customers a touch of normality in an otherwise chaotic world has been one of the highlights of the past few months.
Now that we are back open, we are absolutely loving welcoming back our customers, both old and new, and we wanted to share a few reasons why we think shopping local is the way to go:
- By supporting local businesses, you’re doing much more than supporting the families who run them. You’re helping to keep a local high street running, and to stay full of independent, local businesses that can offer you a lot more than a run of the mill gift. Items in local shops are carefully sourced and considered, chosen from uniqueness or taste or the ability to make you stop and simply say ‘I need it’.
- You can pretty much guarantee that the lucky person you’re buying for will never before have seen the item you’re about to give them. Want to give your succulent loving friend a cuddly cactus so they can forever remember how the pandemic gave them green-fingers for those spiky green growers? Not a problem. We gotcha. Want to give your granny a chocolate pizza to say you’re proud of her for ordering her first takeaway while the world stood still? We’ve got that too. Whoever you’re buying for, tell us a bit about them, and we’ll be able to suggest different options for gifts that are 100% ‘them’.
- By buying from local shops, you’re not just supporting the shops themselves. You’re also supporting the hundreds of small businesses who stock their goods on your local highstreet. You’re helping to support the creatives and designers, jewellery makers and chocolatiers, who create small batches of perfect products that we know you’ll love.
So thank you. Thank you to our readers who bought themselves a box of our chocolates just because they had a hard day at work (and because they’re delicious of course), to our customers who chose to buy birthday presents from us because they wanted to give something ‘a bit special’ and to everyone who has ever walked into our shops and said ‘WOW, I need that’. We think you’re pretty great.
There are shops on your local high street that can cater for your every need, and most of them will offer some sort of online service. There’s never a bad time to shop local, but what better time to try something new than as we gradually move out of a global pandemic?! Our neighbours Walters have a fabulous selection of shoes and handbags; Divine has an excellent selection of scarves and trinkets; Weekdayz has the coolest vintage clothes selection; this is beer have so many different beers it’s hard to choose which one to have - and there are many, many more local, independent retailers that can offer you high quality, unique produce unparalleled in the chains.
Check out experience Porthcawl to find the full list of all the wonderful independent shops in Porthcawl.
If we’ve inspired you to start thinking outside the box, browse our website, give us a call, or send us an email and we’ll be more than happy to help you find a gift that is truly one of a kind.
Author: Sophie Howe