How have you developed your business?
We bought the store in 2017 after it being closed for years prior. When we started trading, we had low footfall and were trading £50 a day. We slowly started doing chocolates from different countries and over time, people started visiting us from all over. Now, everyone thinks we’ve got everything and they’ll automatically come to our shop even if we don’t post on social media.
What three things have you done since June 2021 that set you apart?
- In January, we took over a cheesecake shop in nearby Grangemouth and have moved it into our store, so we now have two businesses in one shop. People are coming from all over to buy either cheesecake or something else.
- We’ve been focusing on growing our store’s Facebook page and the Caledonian Cheesecake Facebook page. The cheesecake page has 48,000 followers and our store’s page has 35,000.
- We’ve also made changes to the shop when it comes to ranging. We’ve taken out lines that don’t sell and bought in faster-moving ones. We try and stick with what’s trending. Last year, when Little Moons were trending on TikTok, we had a queue to end of the road.
What’s the biggest trend or challenge you’ve adapted to (besides Covid-19) since 2021?
Spending the amount of money that we did on the business. We’ve had to put in new fridges, freezers, display fridges and equipment to make the cheesecakes in the shop. It’s the biggest investment we’ve ever done.
What’s the biggest and best change you’ve made in your business since June 2021 and why?
Incorporating the cheesecake business has been a big change. We spent all our savings on it and took a big risk, but it’s been successful so far. We had a couple of people come from Edinburgh on a bus and buy 30 cheesecakes each.
What have you done to retain shoppers since June 2021?
We’ve invested £9,000 since I’ve opened the store to promote social media posts and I’ll keep doing it. Even if it’s a more widely available new UK product, I’ll boost the post so everybody can see it. People still come to us even if everybody else has it because my post is boosted and we already have a good number of followers.
Who would you recommend retailers turn to if they’re looking to improve?
You need to see what people are looking at on social media and show them you’ve got something different, it encourages people to come to you. Big supermarkets have plenty of people coming in but they don’t promote things on social media, so small shops need to do it differently. For us, innovation is something other people don’t do.