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With the future of the high street under the spotlight and 2012 legacy event, RideLondon coming up at the end of the month, The Retail Mutual considers how sporting events could impact independent retailers.

The 2012 Olympic vision

The vision for the 2012 Olympic Games was simple: ‘to use the power of the Games to inspire change.’ It was the post-Games legacy that was at the heart of its thinking when London won the right to host the 2012 Olympics in the first place.

Flurry of new sporting events

It seemed that the vision did indeed inspire several sporting events across the UK of varying degrees and in 2017, UK Sport announced ambitious plans to bring more major sporting events to the UK in the bid to inspire the nation. This is further fuelled by England finishing fourth for the first time since 1990 in the 2018 World Cup Russia.

What do these events mean for the local community?

It depends on the type of the event. For example, the event could be held in a local stadium and impacts parking in the area or it could be a cycle race which runs through the main town centre and could impact local shops and businesses.

Putting it into perspective

As an independent retailer, you should consider the nature of the event. Is it an opportunity to boost your business by marketing to the spectators’ interests (for example, food outlets and relevant stock)? Or is does it raise concern about the loss of trade due to road closures?

Be prepared

Whichever way you look at it you should be prepared. Whether you are open or closed, make sure your store is protected from potential retail crime. If you are choosing to open, ensure you have the stock to cater to the potential audience reach. It’s important to check the amount of stock you have on a regular basis and most importantly, check whether your stock is covered and that your limits are sufficient.

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