Amazon tested the pop up shop model inLondon last fall and was clearly pleased with the findings. According to a from the massiveonline retailer, a partnership with Enterprise Nation has formed and the pairintends to launch ten pop up shops across the UK. Aptly named “Clicks andMortar,” the retail spaces will give more than 100 small businesses a space onhigh street in a campaign set to last one year.
“UK shoppers like to shop both onlineand in high street stores, and our intention is to help small businessessucceed by combining the best elements of online and high street retail,”explained Enterprise Nation founder Emma Jones MBE. “This new concept willprovide small businesses with the space, technology and support to experiencephysical retail for the first time, while enabling customers to discover newbrands on their local high streets.”
The Pop Up Shops Will Host a Variety of Retailers
“This gives us the first step in bringing the brandto life, letting customers be more interactive and giving them an opportunityto try and feel the product in the flesh,” said Altr for Men CEO Alex Doyle.His men’s skincare company was exclusively built online and is amongst thosetaking part in Clicks and Mortar.
Swifty Scooters, creator offoldable kick-scooters for adults, is also joining in. Co-founder CamillaIftakhar gushed, “We’ve always focused on our online business, but a pop-up isan ideal way for customers to try our scooters out for themselves - once youtake a Swifty for a spin, that’s the moment you fall in love with it!”
William Johnson and MichaelFarnsworth, co-founders of Torro Cases, which specialises in leather cases forelectronic devices, echo her sentiments. “Clicks and Mortar feels like a freshroute for hungry new entrepreneurs to reach a wider audience by combining the powerof online shopping whilst enabling customers to touch and feel our products.”
Of course, this is only a verysmall sampling of the brands taking part. Amazon promises shops will haveeverything from electronics to hardware, food and drink, and even health andbeauty products too.
In addition to giving theirretailers a temporary high street home, Amazon aims to bolster businesses witha new apprenticeship programme. The £1m fund will “help create over 150 digitalmarketing, business administration and customer service practitionerapprentices who will work full time for SMEs selling on Amazon, to help boosttheir productivity, sales and exports in the digital age” reports Amazon. Anybrand-owning SME with a turnover of less than £1 million which sells on Amazonand is registered in England may qualify to take advantage of the programme.
Amazon Academies Will Add aFurther Push
In addition to the apprenticeprogramme, the 2019 Amazon Academy programme will give businesses a furtherpush toward their goals with a series of free events designed to give SMEs thetools they need to boost productivity and increase revenue. The first event isslated to take place in Manchester and will have training sessions provided byAmazon’s own teams as well as independent businesses and intellectual propertyand marketing experts.
The Company Intends to Call theGovernment to Action
Amazon believes in its newmultifaceted approach so much, the company vows to track results and submitdetailed information to the Government after the year-long pilot concludes. Ithopes to encourage further discussions about how to improve high streetstrategy and promote additional growth.
“Small businesses are one of ourmost important customer groups, and we’re thrilled to work with EnterpriseNation to design a comprehensive package to help entrepreneurs across the UKgrow their businesses, both in-store and online,” explained Amazon’s UK CountryManager Doug Gurr. “From giving up-and-coming online British brands the chanceto experience physical retail, to funding the training of full-timeapprenticeships and helping to increase SME exports, Amazon is committed tosupporting the growth of small businesses - helping them boost the economy andcreate jobs across the UK.”
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