A LOCALLY owned family business is tackling the downturn in the traditional retail sector by re-launching its shops and adding the opportunity to shop online.
Owner of the Toll Clock Shopping Centre, Bolts Shetland Ltd, said the initial response from customers to their new outlets and website has been very positive.
Their new website at www.boltsonline.co.uk offers a wide range of toys, gifts, household and electrical goods, all competitively priced and reflecting what is on offer in the company’s stores.
The professional and clean website is Bolts’ answer to the likes of Amazon. No need to shop online outwith Shetland – it can all be done locally.
Director Malcolm Sutherland said: “Traditional retail is facing new challenges at the moment. We have been developing an online presence for a few months now to offer other avenues for customers to reach us.”
“One of the main reasons for setting up online was to widen our market. However we also want to try and maintain and improve our local service so we are looking at ways to do this as well. Local customers can now shop from home and we can either post orders out or they can be collected in store at their convenience.”
“Customers who sign up to join our mailing list will be the first to hear about new products and promotions. Some of these promotions will be exclusive to those who join the mailing list. You can also keep up to date with our offers and new products by joining us on Facebook or Twitter.”
He added: “At the moment our web site offers only a small selection from the products we have in our five retail shops. We will constantly be adding more and improving upon your online shopping experience so keep checking back to see more of our great products and improvements to our website.”
Mr Sutherland said that the move to smaller and more dedicated shops had been borne out of the desire to give customers a better service. The new concept also fits better into the overall Toll Clock Shopping Centre. He said having several departments in one shop, as before, had led to shoppers missing out on some of the products on offer.
This, along with the need for every business to renew its image from time to time, led Bolts Shetland to take the bold step to invest heavily at a time of downturn for the retail sector.
Now, with five clearly defined shops within the shopping centre and some rebranded as ‘TollClock’, customers will easily find what they are looking for, and more…
- Bolts Electrical, an authorised agent for Panasonic and Sony for 20 years, has moved to brighter premises and now has a dedicated TV area able to give High Definition and 3D demonstrations. Plus a wide range of small appliances and accessories.
- A smaller dedicated paint shop, TollClock Paint Shop, specialises in Valtti paint (perceived by many as the best available for the Shetland climate), but also stocking Sikkens, Crown and most paint accessories.
- TollClock Toys stock a wide range of all the latest popular toys. With everything for boys and girls of all ages at very competitive prices. They also offer a Christmas Club facility where toys can be set aside and paid for in instalments.
- A fantastic range of housewares and giftware can be found at Bolts Homecomforts downstairs from Bolts Minimarket. The seasonal area is full of BBQs, outdoor furniture and outdoor toys at the moment. This will be replaced with a huge range of Christmas goods later on in the year.
- Bolts Minimarket, which continues to stock all your day-to-day needs, including a wide range of local produce (from J&K Andersons Butchers, Sandwick & Walls Bakeries, Blydoit Fish, Shetland Farm Dairies and more), fresh fruit & veg, newspapers & magazines, frozen food and a wide range of other convenience items.
The family run company has seen many changes in its 60 year history from the motor trade, to boat building, coaches, car hire and a petrol station and now the Toll Clock Shopping Centre. The company currently employs around 30 staff between its own run retail interests and the shopping centre.
Mr Sutherland said that more changes were afoot and a brand new website presenting the Toll Clock Shopping Centre will be launched later this year.