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Retailers remaining resolute

Shepparton retailers are confident Chadstone shopping centre’s $580 million expansion will not negatively affect their businesses and are resolute their future is bright.

ELAINE COONEY September 4, 2014 4:27am

Shepparton Marketplace manager Don Butler said while people might enjoy the larger shopping centre in Melbourne, shopping in Shepparton had many advantages.

‘‘We can offer free parking, good service and a pretty broad range of products,’’ he said.

He said retail sales at Shepparton Marketplace were increasing strongly and while businesses would grow faster in Melbourne and Bendigo because of the increasing population; Shepparton had plenty of opportunities for new retailers.

Mr Butler said many people spoke about wanting more shops in the city, but were not specific about what was needed, and like a lot of people, he too would like to see as many shops filled with new bsuiensses as possible.

He said Shepparton could be marketed as a shopping destination incorporating all of the shopping precincts.

Shepparton Show Me marketing co-ordinator Mat Innes-Irons also said the push was on for Shepparton residents to support the retailers.

He said with the increasing pressure of online sales, some businesses were lifting their service.

‘‘You see them in the banks when they come and greet you,’’ he said.

Mr Innes-Irons said cafes and restaurants offered a friendly customer service.

‘‘You can’t get that online,’’ he said.

He said it was important for retailers to have their doors open to encourage shoppers.

Rebel Sport, Wyndham St assistant manager Tina Ferati said the majority of her customers only shopped online when items were not available in the store.

She said she hoped more retailers would occupy the vacant retail outlets to help the appearance of the city.

Manager of Riverside Plaza’s Chemist Warehouse Kiara Dicker said the organisation noticed trade increasing during the past year.

She said the lead-up to Christmas was her busiest time of the year.

Ms Dicker said customers enjoyed the location of the chemist because there they did not have to wait too long for prescriptions and there was more one-on-one time between customers and staff.

She said it was important to shop locally to support retailers who also lived in the area.

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