Small Business Saturday sees sales surge for SMEs
Analysis of 1,200 UK SMEs using Brightpearl retail software system in the run-up to Christmas shows that sales on Small Business Saturday were up 16% on the previous year but that Cyber Monday saw the greatest overall sales, even though volume was down 2% on 2014. Black Friday and Cyber Monday weren't "anywhere near as significant as in recent years," said Brightpearl chairman Charles Grimsdale. “And the fact that the value of the average order dropped £16 from 2014 suggests retailers have been heavily discounting."
Are over-stuffed wallets damaging shopper loyalty?
New research by Foolproof has shown that shoppers are getting fed up with carrying so many loyalty cards around. The survey found that 65% of consumers had turned down additional cards with 35% saying they hadn’t any more space in their wallet; 50% said that they would be likely to use loyalty initiatives more if they were available via mobile. Peter Ballard, founding partner of Foolproof, said: "The smartest schemes will be the ones that can predict our shopping behaviours and patterns, and help deliver loyalty incentives 'just-in-time' to be one step ahead of us and enhancing our shopping experience in ways that genuinely serve us and reward us for our loyalty."
British food and drink entrepreneurs thriving
The number of food and drink manufacturers in the UK grew by 6% in 2014, taking the total number to 8,225 firms, according to analysis of Government figures by Santander. The sector exports almost £12.8 billion of food and non-alcohol drink products a year, 75% of which goes to the European Union. Mark Collings, head of international, Santander SME Banking, said: "The UK food and drink manufacturing sector has become a major UK success story on an international scale. Over the years the Made in Britain brand has become synonymous with good quality products and services."
Employees call for more appraisals
One in five Britons that has been in employment for over a year has not received a job appraisal with their current employer according to Enterprise Study. The main reasons for the lack of appraisals include management teams being "too busy" (38%), working in a "small environment" (35%) or working in an "informal setting" (19%). However, 63% of those polled said they’d feel happier if they had an appraisal, with a further 38% saying they’d welcome some constructive criticism.