Independent Isle of Bute home and gift shop Simply Buteiful in Rothesay, which is under new ownership, is one of over 300 businesses who are part of the Scotland Loves Local Argyll and Bute Gift Card, with over £2,300 spent at Simply Buteiful to date.
The Council distributed £120 cards to over 6000 low-income households in December 2022, an initiative that owner Rachel McGinlay says encouraged people through the door and helped her business to survive during the winter months,
“Island businesses are very reliant on tourists,” she explains. “Income generated over the summer is usually what sustains the business in the leaner months. However, in my first winter, I wasn’t sure what to expect, and have so appreciated the support I’ve had from locals. The card going out was fantastic as it gave people the opportunity to come in and treat themselves to anything from a set of glasses to a throw or a book.”
Adds Rachel: “As an Island business under new ownership, the gift card has given people a push to try us out and has opened up a whole new clientele for us. Lots of these people have become not only regular customers, but good friends, and that has been an absolute lifeline for my business. If I haven’t got something in stock, I’ll order it in, and that’s something people are asking for more and more.”