Town is top ten for online trade

Blackpool's Toast Cafe Bar which has benefited from e-commerce.

Blackpool's Toast Cafe Bar which has benefited from e-commerce.

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BLACKPOOL businesses are among the quickest to grasp the benefits of e-commerce, according to a new survey.

Google and Ipsos MORI said the town is in the top ten in the UK for online business.

Blackpool South MP Gordon Marsden

Blackpool South MP Gordon Marsden

The Google eTown Awards are designed to recognise those towns whose businesses are most actively embracing the web.

At a time when the internet is spurring economic growth, Blackpool has won eighth place.

The award builds on the success of Blackpool’s small businesses in 2012.

The town saw an increase in summer tourism of 1.7m visitors on the summer last year.

Tech-savvy firms have taken advantage of the spike in interest to drive traffic in their businesses from those searching on the web.

Toast Bar & Grill is leading a wave of new contemporary cafe’s and restaurants that are bringing Blackpool up to date. Owner, Richard Caunce started a website to take online bookings two years ago and saw a huge spike in business. He has now taken this further by offering a tour of the restaurant on Google StreetView.

Mr Caunce said: “The internet has been important for the way my business has grown.

“I’ve put a big effort into my website.

“I’ve seen interest in the business increase by 20 per cent.”

Gordon Marsden, MP for Blackpool South and Shadow Skills and Regional Growth Minister, said: “Small businesses alongside our big tourist attractions in Blackpool have found online and internet trading a key weapon in their survival and I’m delighted this has been recognised in this Google etown award.”

Dan Cobley, managing director at Google UK, said: “The internet is going to contribute massively towards our future economic growth.Blackpool should be extremely proud to be one of the UK’s top e-commerce towns.”

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