AN ENTREPRENEUR has come up with a unique way of enticing shoppers to our high streets – with a phone app.
Kevin Hooper has created Shop Portsmouth.
Everyone knows about Cascades and Gunwharf Quays but the other parts of Portsmouth aren’t being promotedKevin Hooper
The app allows people to search for shops, restaurants and other local businesses across the city, from Gunwharf Quays to North End and Cosham.
It gives a breakdown of the businesses in each shopping district in the city, enabling users to call them directly through the app.
More than 500 businesses have signed up to feature on the app, which is available for download on both Android phones and iPhones.
Kevin said: ‘I did a lot of research in the Portsmouth area. Everyone knows about Cascades and Gunwharf Quays but the other parts of Portsmouth aren’t being promoted.
‘It needs a new modern platform where the whole of Portsmouth can see one application.
‘There are certain areas like Fratton, Hilsea and Cosham that need to be promoted.’
So far, around 500 people have downloaded the application.
Kevin added: ‘It’s about raising awareness, not just for the general public but for the businesses as well.’
A digital discount card will soon be available through the app allowing savings at shops and restaurants.
Victoria Knight, runs Velopy Bikes in New Road, North End.
She said: ‘It’s so easy to go online these days but it’s important to come in to store and keep service going in local shops as well as online.
‘The app gives people really quick access to local stores which keeps money in the city. The reception has been really positive.’
Anne Gill of Anne Gill Eye Care in London Road, North End, added: ‘I think we are moving into a world where almost everyone has a smartphone.
‘People aren’t always looking at websites but are on their phone more and so for us it seemed sensible to get involved with.
‘With a small business if you can get the whole community coming to a local environment its good.
‘Something like this engages people as it’s about shopping local and physically visiting small businesses.’
Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt said: ‘This is a great idea and can really boost marketing for individual stores and also shopping areas.
‘It’s through initiatives like this that smaller shops can keep pace with larger retailers.’