created and sold more than 5500 jars of
orange-champagne marmalade to celebrate
the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate
Middleton. They sent some to the couple,
attracting widespread media attention and
praise from government officials, including
Prime Minister Harper, the Premier of
Ontario and the Governor General. A limit-ed-edition run of strawberry-champagne
Jubilee Jam was then developed and sold
in the spring of 2012 to commemorate
the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
Springridge’s pastoral setting invites guests
to wander or just relax on the grounds.
“The longer they stay, the more they shop,”
says Laura. “Everyone wants to take a piece
of the experience home with them.”
Special attention is paid to merchandis-
ing, emphasizing colourful, boutique-style
displays that romance, often incorporating
tools or other farm implements. Clear, wide
walkways and open sightlines encourage
customers to explore in a relaxed atmo-
sphere. Displays are simple, well-stocked
and easy to navigate with products removed
from packaging to help customers envision
the items in their own home, says Laura,
adding that “shaking up” displays regularly
keeps the interest of customers and staff,
and generates sales.
“Retail is detail,” she says. That translates into being organized, efficient, clean
and tidy. It also means working with suppliers to ensure products are a good fit for the
shop, making products accessible to customers who want to inspect and touch, and
providing well-trained, knowledgeable staff.
Springridge’s website, launched in
2001, offered an excellent platform for
promoting new products and keeping customers informed, but adding a dedicated
in-house social media expert in 2010 accelerated the business’s online presence.
Facebook, Twitter, a retail blog and an
e-newsletter are now important tools for
interacting with customers, suppliers, customers, associations and other retailers.
“We want to look for ways to remain
unique, and continue to let people experience this old barn and the farm.”