The local business rising to the Covid challenge

It goes without saying that Christmas will be a challenge for local businesses this year, with many shoppers opting to go online for their seasonal shop. However, with more and more local businesses going virtual, there is no reason why we all can’t still support our own this year. This week the Herald caught up with Jacqueline McCaffery from Advanced Beauty in Enniskillen, an innovative local business that, despite being currently closed, has been rising to the challenge by building its online presence to survive.

First of all, how are things going with the business?

I’m still kind of in shock about finding ourselves back in a lockdown position. [It] came as quite a surprise, although we were aware of the rising case numbers, we didn’t expect such a sudden closure. We’d almost fully acclimatised to the ‘new normal’ and although we were operating with a reduction in customer numbers, the business had already started to take a direction, with skin and well being (feel good) treatments increasingly in popularity. 

Given this is such a challenging time for local businesses, how can local people who want to support local businesses help?

We’ve tried to move our business more online, which for me has been a huge transition. Advanced Beauty was built and grown on the ability to interact on a one to one basis with our customers, and take them on an individual customer care journey. Our business was built on real life experiences, with actual physical treatments accounting for the majority of our business.


We now rely on the support of people locally to choose to go online and pick up Christmas gifts from us – local businesses and not heading straight to the large companies like Amazon, Ebay, Debenhams etc. Other things include purchasing a voucher, or simply supporting our social media pages. Liking, sharing and tagging our social media posts, would be much appreciated as this helps to build our online presence and therefore reach more people online both locally and further afield.

Have you noticed an increase in the number of people turning to your online outlet recently?

During lock down there was an increase in online purchases, but since reopening the face to face sales have still accounted for the majority of our purchases. We have had an increased interest again thankfully and we are trying to enhance this further with our personal approach. Offering advice on products, offering tailor made skincare packages and gifts, and offering skin consultations and prescriptions via the phone, online, and virtually.

Would you encourage people to try to remember local businesses before going to the bigger outlets online this Christmas?

Supporting local, means we in turn can all support each other. When normality resumes we will all still want to avail of these services and luxury experiences. For me being a small business online, competing on price with large companies is difficult, as we don’t sell the volumes they do. But choosing us, may only cost an individual and extra £1 or £2, but that support to a local business helps get us closer to coming out the other side of this uncertain and distressing time.

So customers for Christmas, buy a gift, product or voucher for a local restaurant, shop or salon, businesses purchase your supplies from a local firm. Together businesses need to work together, recommend each other, praise each other, and together keep Enniskillen Local business alive.

As a small token of encouragement all purchases made online using the code: Shoplocal will receive a 15% discount. Shop online at or shop directly from The Advanced Beauty website, or email Also I would just like to say a massive Thank you to all our loyal customers for their continued support over the last 13 years, and in particular over the past 7 months. It means so much.

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The Fermanagh Herald is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
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