The last couple of weeks at Woodlands have been phenomenal with sales increases of over 20% – but much of that is down to our nearest competitor closing for a refit.
by Antony Begley
We knew it was too good to be true. While we’ve been working exceptionally hard across the store, bringing in an entire new range of fresh, chilled and frozen from Nisa, upping our game in food to go, extending our vaping range, remerchandising half a dozen categories and more – we were still a little puzzled that sales shot up literally overnight a couple of weeks ago.
Our weekly sales increases are around 20% on average, which is fantastic news. We were congratulating ourselves on the success of all of our initiatives and thanking the heavens for great weather and the World Cup but we were always sceptical – and it didn’t take long for us to find out why the uplifts were so instantaneous: the nearest c-store to us has closed for three weeks for a refit.
It’s a strange feeling because the excitement we felt at growing our sales so much has been tempered by the real reason behind the increases and now we can only focus on trying our best to, firstly, make it a fantastic few weeks and, secondly, to try to retain as many of those new faces as possible.
In some ways it’s almost worse to have been given a little glimpse of huge success like this, only to know that most of it is likely to ebb away again soon – but three exceptional weeks will have to do, and it’s certainly not harming the business.
Our Nisa adventure has gotten off to a good start, albeit with a few hitches. The first hitch was ordering way too much ice cream and frozen dessert lines for the space we have – which created a frantic few hours in the shop clearing our spare freezers to make room for the overstock. Thankfully, the ice creams are selling like hot cakes so we should be back on an even keel soon.
The chilled range has also started arriving and we’re hard on Facebook and in-store to let everyone know about the new range.
This month will see us implement Barr’s Soft Drinks radical new planogram and we’ll also be implementing a new planogram from pladis that will hopefully help drive up sales too.
Staffing issues continue
While we’ve got a pretty settled team now we’re still running into problems. One member of the team had severe tooth ache which turned out to require two wisdom teeth being extracted so we lost her for almost two weeks while a new start didn’t last the distance.
While he was a great worker he couldn’t fit into the team. The search begins again…