Ole & Steen, Duck and Rice, Tonkotsu, Sourced Market, JW Lees and Revolution Bars are amongst a host of hospitality businesses to have launched online stores with Sheffield-based Toggle in recent weeks – selling at-home experiences, gift cards and retail products to boost pre-Christmas sales during lockdown.
With businesses forced to close their doors once again and online predicted to take a bigger share of Christmas spend than ever before, those who do not shift to e-commerce risk missing out on a crucial revenue stream and brand exposure during this very different festive period.
It follows a trend established during the first lockdown of businesses turning to at-home experiences and ‘pay it forward’ gift cards to boost sales whilst their doors were closed. The Devonshire Arms in Derbyshire reported online gift card sales of £25,000 within the first month of going live on Toggle during lockdown.
Based at Park Hill in Sheffield, Toggle a hospitality tech firm providing an intuitive e-commerce platform which integrates with a dozen different platforms and EPOS providers - to create a transactional website for businesses to easily sell gift cards, products and experiences directly to customers. It is free for the first £1,000 worth of sales and its fixed-rate package is half-price for businesses that sign-up before the end of November.
The highly-regarded names in hospitality that have become Togglers over the last month include:
Duck and Rice
Ole & Steen
Dan Brookman, CEO of Toggle, said: “Closed physical spaces mean that businesses are now relying entirely on their online channels to drive sales at this crucial time of the year. Now is the time to get creative, to keep pushing your brand to customers. There’s going to be a massive shift towards shared experiences.”
Sara Gatt, co-owner of Pesto, said: “We’ve experienced great success with in-venue gift voucher sales in the past, but felt it was time to upgrade to a digitally-focused gifting platform. Our new online gift shop allows customers to purchase fantastic gifts and experiences even while our doors are closed. We’ve worked with industry-leading provider Toggle to help create our new platform, which is incredibly easy to use and fully accessible to all.”
Hundreds of pubs, bars and restaurants are now live on Toggle, including: Yummy Pubs, Boston Tea Party, Brewhouse & Kitchen, Côte, Turtle Bay, San Carlo, Bob Bob Ricard, Park Chinois, Revolución de Cuba, Hickory’s Smokehouse, Ego Restaurants and Rosa's Thai Café.