Created by online retailers for online retailers.
There are lots of businesses and groups on Twitter that offer to help small businesses, some offer free services and others require payment. With so many options available we thought we would take a few minutes to talk about some of the things that make Nation of eShopkeepers (NOES) different.
The first is that NOES itself isn't a business, it doesn't make a profit from it's members in any way. We're not part of a social media company, we don't take sponsorship payments and we make no charges for membership. NOES is maintained by a small core team, we freely give our time because we believe in the idea of small shops working together.
That leads to another difference, NOES doesn't work the way most other groups on Twitter do, we don't offer 'something for nothing'. The NOES system works because of the way it's members work together, helping each other to reach far more people than we could alone. The NOES Twitter accounts and the website are there to help our members to work together as effectively as possible.
Also, NOES isn't just a retweeting group. In many ways small online shops are in the same situation that the bricks and mortar shops found themselves in a few years ago. Those of us with websites are surrounded by large, big name retailers who have the resources and expertise to control the search engines and crowd out smaller shops. Those of us who sell on the online marketplaces find that our concerns are not considered by the companies that run them, even though it's the wide range of products that we offer that attract the visitors to their sites.
The bricks and mortar high streets that are recovering are the ones where the indie retailers are working together to attract customers, they recognise that the more people who visit their high street the more every shop benefits. With the Online High St we aim to create the same effect for online retailers. The Online High St allows small shops to have a shared identity and online location while remaining completely independent shops. The more shops who are involved, the closer we work together, the larger the 'footprint' we create online and the easier it is for customers to find us.
It's a little over a year since the Online High St started, in that time NOES has continued to grow. Currently NOES consits of:
The NOES website complete with the new look High St
The Central Cafe
Five Twitter Accounts
#eshopsUKhour at 2pm on Fridays
The NOES Facebook Page
The NOES Pinterest Account
If you run a small online shop and would like to take part please tweet using #eshopsUK and retweet others who use the tag. If you would like details of how to join the Online High St please email: email@example.com
If you are a member and would like to be more involved in maintaining NOES please let us know on the forum or via the above email.
The Nation of eShopkeepers core team
Anne, Don, Migsie, Jo Jo and Martina.