Today we are celebrating 1 year since the Shop Hartlepool website launched. We’ve had a successful year, full of achievements, all of which have benefited Hartlepool based businesses. If you’ve not been around since the beginning then let us introduce you…
Supporting local businesses
Back in 2019 the Love Hartlepool campaign was launched to promote Hartlepool and highlight its positivity, while supporting the prosperity and growth of the town and its villages.
After successfully receiving a RHSSF funding agreement in 2020 (now rebranded as the Welcome Back Fund), Hartlepool Borough Council allocated part of the funds to a marketing campaign to support local businesses, creating the Shop Hartlepool campaign alongside Love Hartlepool.
COVID hit businesses hard and Shop Hartlepool was established to help local retailers get back on their feet. The goal was for Shop Hartlepool to become a hub for customers to search for information on their favourite stores, as well as providing a promotional platform both online and on social media.
Why shop local?
A quick, online order might be convenient but it doesn’t support local people or the local economy. Heading to Middleton Grange Shopping Centre or making an Etsy search for a Hartlepool based business can make a bigger difference than you think. Whether you are spending £1 or £100, every purchase made in Hartlepool directly impacts the community.
Shop Hartlepool has been created to encourage you to think Hartlepool first the next time you make a purchase. You never know what you might find when you look a little closer to home.
Shop Hartlepool Milestones
Launching the Shop Hartlepool blog
We wanted to give local business owners and community leaders a voice. A place to tell their story, showcase what their business offers and tell our readers why they should Shop Hartlepool.
We launched the Shop Hartlepool blog in August 2021 with a variety of features including Totes Eco and Berry’s Kitchen. Ever since we’ve been showcasing some of the fantastic businesses that we are lucky to have on Shop Hartlepool.
We’ve featured local success stories, including the takeover of Thomas & Saunders by long-term staff members Joanna and Tony. We’ve also spoken to Middleton Grange Shopping Centre Manager, Mark Rycraft about the services available in the centre. Hartlepool is a fantastic community, and the blog post shows just how much we have to offer.
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas
In December 2021, we hosted the Shop Hartlepool Christmas Window Trail and Competition. We asked Shop Hartlepool businesses to deck the halls with Christmas magic and 26 businesses added Christmas cheer to their shop windows.
The public voted on our website for their three favourite window displays. On December 23rd the votes were in and The Simple Weigh was crowned the winner!
We celebrated the festive season throughout December on our social media with a Shop Hartlepool Advent Calendar. We brought together all of the fantastic gifts from small businesses along with with a range of gift guides on our blog.
200 businesses joined Shop Hartlepool
Many people don’t know what is right on their doorstep and we wanted to change that. If we asked you how many retailers were in Hartlepool, would you have guessed over 200? Shop Hartlepool now represents 240 Hartlepool retailers and the number grows every day. From service based businesses to local creatives, we’ve brought them all together in one place.
Taking to the high street
To celebrate reaching 200 businesses on the Shop Hartlepool platform, the team alongside Hartlepool Borough Council and Graham Sault from the High Street Task Force, took to the high street. The team visited the local area to meet some of the amazing local businesses on the platform speaking to five Shop Hartlepool businesses to find out their thoughts on being part of the Shop Hartlepool community.
You can read all about the events of the day in our blog post ‘Meet the faces behind the business‘.
Shop Hartlepool celebrated the Queen's Platinum Jubilee
After the success of the Christmas Window Trail, we decided to bring back the concept for the Platinum Jubilee. We noticed many of the Shop Hartlepool businesses celebrating the occasion by decorating their window so we encouraged them to tag us in their Jubilee posts. You can find all of the participants in the Platinum Jubilee Window Trail blog post.
Looking to the future
Shop Hartlepool continues to be a valuable asset to the Hartlepool community, bringing businesses and shoppers together. We will continue to promote the fantastic offering from Shop Hartlepool businesses on our social media and blog. We hope to see more businesses join the platform, allowing us to continue to showcase everything the town has to offer.
We hope to grow our social media and platform in the future, adapting to the needs of local businesses in the town. We want you to have your say, so keep an eye on our blog and social media for how you can get involved.
Finally, we hope that the Hartlepool people continue to support the hard work and passion behind local businesses. We do what we do because we know the impact of that support. We’d love for Hartlepool people to continue to do their bit to support Shop Hartlepool businesses with us.
What can you do?
Here are just a few things you can do to support local, Hartlepool based businesses…
Take a look around the Shop Hartlepool website. See just how many great businesses are on your doorstep. We’ve got service based businesses, salons, creatives and more. We promise you’ll find a variety of great businesses on Shop Hartlepool.
Follow them on social media. Social media is an important way for businesses to promote their products. How many people they can reach is directly impacted by how people respond to their content.
So next time you see a post from a local business, give the post a like, leave a comment or a quick share. It all makes a difference.
Make a recommendation. Wherever and whenever you’ve had an experience you’ve loved, tell your friends and family. If the business has a social media page, Google Business or website then leave them a review. Your kind words showcase what they offer to potential customers and mean a lot to the person behind the business.