A more joined-up approach between the States and the Guernsey Retail Group, along with a new appointment to help drive development in the sector, will seek to improve the Guernsey shopping experience.
The Guernsey Retail Group has been working on a joint campaign with the States of Guernsey – Guernsey is Open – to encourage islanders to support local and shop on-island.
Retail has been one of the worst hit sectors during the pandemic but Covid-19 has also highlighted the importance of supporting local, for all the experiences that it offers.
As well as general awareness-raising – spoon flags on St Peter Port seafront, advertising at the front of Sir Charles Frossard House, radio, social, digital and print campaigns – a website has been developed which gives retailers the opportunity to include a value-added offer, to encourage islanders to visit their stores.
To drive the work to promote the sector, the Guernsey Retail Group has also appointed Korinne Le Page to the role of Head of Retail Development for Guernsey. Korinne has been a business owner for more than 20 years and a regular exhibitor at retail and trade shows across the UK.
More recently, Korinne has focused on helping business owners succeed through personalised training and coaching. Her role as Head of Retail Development will see her working on improving the local shopping experience for islanders and visitors, encouraging islanders to keep the Guernsey pound on-island, filling empty shops and increasing footfall across retail areas island-wide.
Korinne Le Page, Head of Retail Development for the Guernsey Retail Group, said: “We have all missed that connection with other people, that personal touch, during the two lockdowns and that it is something you simply don’t get with an online purchase. Many of us have missed being able to go into shops, to chat with people, browse and buy something there and then. I’m very excited about my appointment and hopeful that, as momentum grows, we can encourage islanders to choose to shop locally.”
Deputy Neil Inder, President of the Committee for Economic Development, explained: “Our Committee is very aware of the challenges the retail sector has faced during the last 18 months in particular. Covid-19 has impacted much of island life and the High Street, along with our colleagues in tourism, have had a really tough time, so the Committee wanted to work together, to offer support and ultimately get as many islanders shopping on-island as possible. We’ve been pleased to hear that the campaign has had a positive impact.”