‘You just have to love people’ - Norfolk boutique owner reveals secrets to 30 year success
- Credit: Archant
It’s all about an honest relationship with the customers.
That’s the secret to retail success, according to Annie Bush, owner of Get Smart in Fakenham.
This paper’s Shop Local campaign is highlighting local businesses and asking readers to support their independents in the run up to Christmas - and the Bridge Street boutique is a perfect example of a great independent.
Get Smart has been in business for almost 30 years, offering customers unique and trendy clothes and accessories.
Mrs Bush, from Dereham, has built the shop’s reputation thanks to a very hands-on approach, offering customers advice and support on the latest additions to their wardrobe.
She believes this relationship is what has helped them thrive.
“We have a very good customer base who will come back for their new wardrobe, something for Christmas and they know if they come in I will find something for them.
“I will help them model their clothes and help people in the changing rooms,” she said.
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“Me, Kay and Jenny will give them advice on what looks good, and what does not.
“We will always be kind and help them and that’s why we do so well.”
The 77-year-old loves to get stuck into her work, and said that, being a farmer’s wife, she knows all about rolling up her sleeves and taking on a challenge.
This has been the case with the pandemic, with her manufacturers not producing anything for the autumn.
MORE: Do you Shop Local with independents? Fill in our surveyRather than having last season’s stock on the rails, she has been buying new stock online, meaning they have something fresh for customers to check out.
This customer base has helped the business survive for almost three decades, and with her passion for fashion, the shop offers something the high street just can’t.
“I think being in the trade for a while you get an eye for what is trendy,” she said.
“Customers love to come in and I always say hello and we have a chat, they tell me what they are after and I can take them there.
“We also have a nice chair for the men, that is very handy.
“We will do anything to help anyone and that’s what it is all about.”
The boutique owner said there is no hidden secret for a successful business, but rather a passion for the job you do.”