December 12 2013 Latest news:
Friday, November 30, 2012
HIGH street retailers are urging people to shop locally instead of resorting to the internet for Christmas purchases this year.
According to a recent survey by the consumer watchdog Which?, 80% of people said they had bought Christmas presents online last year.
But one in 10 of the online festive gifts were delivered late despite the majority of people placing the orders way in advance of the cut-off dates.
Which? director Richard Lloyd said most online shoppers were looking for cheaper prices, but he added: “It’s clear some online retailers need to raise their game, with people complaining of delays with deliveries, faulty items and poor stock availability.”
James Morgan, who runs the independent store Compact Music in Sudbury’s North Street, said: “Although shopping online might save people a little time, for every pound you spend online, sadly only 5p trickles back into the local economy.
“As we sell most musical instruments for around the same price as they can be bought online, many people are now opting to come to us because they are assured of a better after service. We can also advise customers of the right instrument for their needs, and if they do get a problem, we can sort it for them face to face.
“The other advantage is that customers can come in a pick up their purchases so they know they’ll have them in time for Christmas.”
Mr Morgan said high street business needed to make an effort to “draw people in” to towns like Sudbury - and to create a “shopping experience” that could not be rivalled by online retailers. He added: “For example by doing things such as promoting local bands with poster displays and album signings, we are generating interest and creating reasons for people to come out to the shops, rather than simply sitting there with their home computer.”