John and Marie Vine won 2010′s IAA Merchandising award for their understanding that good merchandising will drive impulse sales, and the way to create it is by working with suppliers, using planograms and group¬ing products effectively.
Maintaining strong displays is hard work, says John. But such is the way with a busy independent store, and the Vines believe good merchandising is worth the effort involved.
The small store in this Shropshire mar¬ket town is a Palmer & Harvey Super Shop and it is Palmer & Harvey who supplies the couple with merchandising advice through its planograms.
Staff development is also important to the couple.
“At the moment we have an apprentice doing an NVQ Level 2 in customer services and another of our staff recently did an NVQ Level 2 in retail,” says Marie Vine.
They also paid for another member of staff to do a Sage Accounting course. The staff have weekly informal appraisals where they are given feedback on where they are performing well and where they could improve.