By Colin Falconer (@cs_rose1)
“Businesses don’t know if they are going to be operating in the coming weeks or months.”
Times are hard for businesses and the self employed alike as Michael Gilchrist of Clarke ePos UK Ltd explains when the service that they offer is designed to save companies money the element of uncertainty is seriously impacting companies making decisions on saving money as they don’t know whether they will be afloat.
“We’re working crazy hours at the moment just to survive, but it’s tough for everyone not just ourselves”
While Michael is one of the few that is able to go out and work at the moment it is not a given that every company who are in a position to operate are making a lot of money, for now it is a survival job for both the staff and the organisations.
“The thing that frightens me is the amount of high streets and main streets that I have been on and it is a ghost town.”
There are many different factors that have contributed to the demise of Ayr’s (and many other cities) high street however in Michael’s opinion there is one that rises above the rest.
“One of the prominent factors for this, more than ever is online shopping.”
Originally from Ayr, Michael addresses the issue of Ayr’s high street and how the difference between seeing it now and when he was a younger man is staggering. This not only shows the way in which Covid has affected our high streets but also the way in which time and innovation have altered our shopping experiences.
“Covid has been disastrous for our high streets.”
As of March 2020, Covid has decimated many sectors of business and upon speaking with Allan it is clear that he believes it has had a significant impact on the future of business and in particular high street shops as some will unfortunately never re-open even after this pandemic is over. This is the reality for many businesses in 2021 with the uncertainty surrounding grants, relief and furlough businesses will be forced to shut their doors for good if they are unable to adapt with the unpredictable change that comes with the pandemic.
“This has been the death nail of the traditional high street.”
According to Statista, as much as 87% of UK households made an online purchase in the last 12 months as of September 2020. With such a large number already using online methods as a means of shopping instead of physically going into stores, this could spell disaster for high street shops in the near future.
In the video below we hear from Allan Dorrans MP and Michael Gilchrist on how the current situation is impacting businesses.
It’s not all doom and gloom as the pandemic has brought some success stories as Regan Kelly reports on John Connors creator of the Dooey App which has had a rather positive 5-6 months.