In such turbulent times it was business as usual and smiles all around at Scotland’s Trade Fair, with visitor numbers up by 3% and many orders taken. Following an excellent tourist season in Scotland, with high numbers of foreign tourists, shops were in a positive mood to re-order, seek out 2020 ranges and re-stock their shelves.
The energy around the hall and the constant buzz over the two days lifted spirits as buyers sought out so many new products, re-ordered stock and renewed friendships. Again and again exhibitors were heartened by the quality of the buyers with few time wasters, which all led to a very buzzy atmosphere. This was enhanced by the ‘Just a Card’ campaign who came and handed out stickers and badges to visitors to re-enforce this clever social media campaign to encourage footfall into shops, as well as talking to visitors at the Show drinks on Sun evening.
The Autumn Show, which took place from 21-22 Sept, was a great mecca for inspiration with a new Craft Gallery, with companies such as The Crafty Kit Company, Humblewood, Milomade and Swifty Bell Designs. In the Launch Gallery the new, fresh faced exhibitors attracted orders and interest as retailers sought out genuinely new products.
Fiona Ritchie from Scottish skin care company Siabann said: “This Show has been great for us with many orders from existing customers. After many years of exhibiting here it’s so encouraging to be still getting new orders and stockists.”
Yvonne Carr, Buyer for Visit Scotland added: “Scotland’s Trade Fair Autumn is a great opportunity to review the past tourist season, get a sneak preview of the next year’s ranges, trial a few products pre-Christmas and focus our mind on existing customers, so we often place large orders to get in before the end of year rush.”
Show Director Mark Saunders said: “This year we introduced new initiatives, such as free tea and coffee after 3.30pm, a drinks party etc, to make the visitor experience that much more enjoyable and give our buyers a good day out. This was certainly achieved and we are delighted with the positive atmosphere and quality of the buyers. Even the food offering from the SEC excelled itself so stomachs were full and faces were happy!”