Best Retail Practices Program
The Best Retail Practices Program is available to eligible small retailers and restaurants located in Lowell. This program is offered twice a year contingent on funding, typically in the spring and fall.
Eligible Applicants: This program is funded through a federal grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) - Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program. To qualify for this program, applicants will need to meet the following criteria:
· Applicants must be a small retailer, restaurant or service business with a visible storefront;
· Applicants need to be a “microenterprise” defined as a business that has five (5) or fewer full-time employees or part-time equivalent (1 full-time employee = 40 hrs./week);
· The owner or one of the employees at the micro-enterprise must be a low-or-moderate income person by HUD income standards.
The BRP is a three part program:
Part I: Workshop- A 2-hour workshop and presentation by an industry expert using visual examples on best retail practices. The presentation focus on visual merchandizing, store appeal, customer service, marketing among other relevant topics to assist retailers and restaurants grow their business. The workshop is free of charge. Attendance to the workshop is required to proceed to Parts II & III of the program.
Part II: One-on-One in-store consultation: Participants at the workshop are then eligible to apply for the free in-store consultation. In addition to the in-store consultation, the participant businesses will receive a full written report detailing recommendations for store improvements.
Part III: Grant Money- Participants at the in-store consultation will then be eligible to receive a 80% matching grant of up to $2,500 to make those necessary improvement identified on the report.
Upcoming BRP workshop: The next BRP workshop is on March 12, 2014- click here for more information and how to register.
Click here for flyer in Spanish
Click here for flyer in Portuguese
Click here for flyer in Khmer
For more information on the program and eligibility, please contact:
Department of Planning & Development /Economic Development Office
(978) 674-1435 (Direct)