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Slick responses, if a little old-fashioned

Store location: Central Scotland
Enquiry: Natural & cruelty-free makeup

Previously in this series, Better Retailing Magazine set the standard for secret shopping to find the great, the good or even the average health food retailers. Following our relaunch 15 months ago, New Natural Business has picked up the baton. The pandemic has changed shopping patterns for many customers so we've been focusing on stores with an online shop

First impressions

My very first impressions are that the style and colours of the website seem a little bit old-fashioned. However, once I start browsing I find it has a responsive design which works smoothly.

Key information about both the physical and online shop is also shown clearly – it gives me the impression it should be straightforward to find what I'm looking for.

Verdict 8/10

Website layout

The website is very easy to navigate – everything is clearly laid out.

The online shop covers a wide range of products, everything you'd expect to find in a traditional health food shop, including chilled products which can be collected in-store. Product information is fairly detailed, although some wording seems perhaps a little bit SEO-focused rather than being aimed at customers.

Special offers are highlighted on the main online shop page. There's also a search feature which works well.

Verdict 9/10

Personal attention

Contact information, including an enquiry form, is easy to find. The website includes a good selection of wholefood recipes and some background about the team, which helps to give it a more personal feel.

The shop doesn't seem to have any social media pages but I am offered the option to sign up to their email newsletter to keep in touch with updates.

Verdict 8/10

Check out

Checkout is straightforward, with clear options for in-store collection or home delivery. I am not encouraged to add any extra items to my order during checkout, but I am offered the option to sign up to their email newsletter.

Terms and conditions and expected order dispatch times are shown clearly. Payment works smoothly, using a well-known payment gateway.

I receive several emails to confirm the progress of my order from payment to despatch. Delivery is very fast and the parcel is packed simply but securely.

Verdict 9/10

Overall impression

Overall, I find this shop's website did its job well – everything works as it should and information is easy to find. The processing of my order for exactly the makeup I am looking for is very efficient and I would be happy to shop with them again.

Verdict 8/10

Total marks 42/50

Read the previous Secret Shopper report here...

The Awards are run in conjunction with the Health Food Institute and reward excellence in independent health store retailing. The winner is selected from the stores visited by the New Natural Business secret shoppers throughout the year.