Retailers to participate in scheme to improve

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Businesses in Winchester’s market towns are set to take part in a development programme designed to help them build and reinforce their retail and selling skills.

Winchester City Council is supporting up to 40 local businesses through the ‘Up your game, up your gain’ initiative.

Open to small retail businesses in Bishop’s Waltham, Wickham, Alresford and Denmead, the scheme offers each participant the chance to see itself as its customers do by agreeing to being ‘mystery-shopped’ and receiving feedback through a report and one-to-one advice session from a customer service expert.

The mystery visits will be carried out by Shopper Anonymous Surrey, part of the UK’s leading mystery shopping company.

Retailers will be rated on their window displays, interior layout and customer service.

Jim Smith, from Shopper Anonymous Surrey, said: ‘In our experience of running these projects elsewhere, retailers get really useful feedback which can directly improve sales and help bring businesses together – which can only augur well for the future.’