We’re long past the time where a social media presence can be seen as an optional extra or as a USP for a business. Stores in every location – and serving all demographics – will have customers logging on to find out everything from opening hours to promotions and food-to-go options.
Done well, social media can also provide a way of highlighting how a business operates at the heart of its community.
“We had a Santa visit our store at Christmas, and the Christmas Fayre helped us raise £800 for Macmillan Cancer, which we posted about on Facebook,” says Julie Kaur Duhra, who owns Premier Jules Convenience Store in Telford, Shropshire.
Other stores, meanwhile, are being inspired by the viral dance routines on platforms, such as TikTok, to engage both customers and staff, helping stores to show those working on the shopfloor – and giving their businesses a greater sense of personality.
But having a successful social media presence isn’t always easy.
While many stores were happy to discuss their social media strategies, others told betterRetailing they were pausing social media output while they either worked on their overall strategy or even recruited a dedicated member of staff to focus on producing their store’s online content.
With so many stores now taking their social media presence more seriously than ever, we speak to four retailers to hear their advice.