Costcutter is rolling out social media training to all its retailers next year.

Following a successful pilot programme for selected stores, which helped boost sales, the symbol will make the programme available to all 2,600 retailers.

Training will focus initially on Facebook and will equip retailers with the tools to develop their online presence, drive footfall and engage with their customers. The programme is part of Costcutter’s long-term investment in IT and digital platforms to increase store efficiency.

Retailers will receive support from the Costcutter digital team and individual store pages will link back to the master store Facebook page to reinforce national promotions and initiatives. An effective Facebook page allowed stores to enhance their local proposition with store-specific deals, competitions and support for local events, the group said.

“There is significant demand from our retailers to use social media as they recognise the opportunity social media provides to engage with their local customers,” said Costcutter digital marketing manager Sean Russell. “With two thirds of adults in the UK owning a smartphone and 90% of 16-24 year olds having one, a strong social media presence is key to reaching consumers who are not consuming media in the traditional way.”

During the trial period, Costcutter Ellon retailer Derek Ritchie reached over 1,000 likes on his brand new Facebook page in just two months. One promotion on Aberlour whisky achieved sell-out in store after publishing a Facebook post which reached almost 8,000 local consumers and gathered over 900 likes, comments and shares.

Mace retailer Alan Kasch, who owns a store in Worcester, posted a beer promotion during the Rugby World Cup that drove so many customers into store he had to draft more staff to replenish stock.

The Costcutter ActivHub resource centre is available online with best practice guides, top tips and case studies.