How to get World Cup ready

With just over six weeks until the World Cup kicks off, retailers are gearing up to make the most of the opportunity. Uldduz Sohrabi Larki finds out four ways you can capitalise on this important season

With just over six weeks until the World Cup kicks off, retailers are gearing up to make the most of the opportunity. Uldduz Sohrabi Larki finds out four ways you can capitalise on this important season

1. Stock a winning snacks and drinks range


To make the most of the World Cup opportunity, you need to make sure your shelves are packed with popular drinks and snacks. It is important to be equipped for the build-up to this event, as well as maintain strong availability during the tournament.

Amy Burgess, trade communications manager at Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP), says arranging a night in with family and friends to get together and watch televised sports events like the World Cup is becoming more popular. 

“This has created a significant opportunity for retailers to increase their sales,” she adds. 

You need to ensure that you are catering for children and adults by providing a great core range of soft drinks, alcohol and snacks. 

According to Burgess, 21% of adults choose not to consume alcohol, which increases retailers’ opportunity to push soft drinks sales. 

Lucy Grogut, Lucozade Sport brand director at Lucozade Ribena Suntory, agrees. “Looking at soft drinks in general, sales typically rise by more than 5% during major sporting events. Within sports drinks specifically this spike is even more pronounced, with sales of Lucozade Sport increasing by an average of 12% during sporting tournaments.”

Matt Collins, sales director of for convenience, wholesale, discounters & foodservice at KP Snacks, says retailers can boost drinks and snacks sales by promoting a full sports package. 

“Encourage trial and boost cross-category buying by, for example, positioning nuts and crisps near to the alcohol,” he explains.

Do it: Use your EPoS to identify your most popular snacks and drinks lines and create themed offers to drive sales

2. Get your timing right 


Finding out what works for your shop requires planning. Steven Richardson, ShopperTrak director, says that getting the timing of your offer right is crucial to increasing sales. 

“With this year’s tournament being held in Russia, England’s kick off times for the group stages take place at either 1pm or 7pm. 

“This is similar to the timings of the 2010 South African World Cup, in which afternoon matches negatively impacted footfall, while early evening kick-offs boosted footfall before the match, as shoppers headed out to stock up on supplies,” Richardson explains. 

By understanding when stores will be busiest, you can ensure you get the right number of staff on duty to accommodate the increase in customers. This will ensure that the service is upheld so customers will continue to have a good experience. 

Make sure you are stocked up on popular meals ahead of the matches. Paul Wyatt, Dr Oetker head of marketing, says big nights in are perfect timing to stock up on frozen meals, like pizzas.

Do it: Create plans for your store depending on if important matches are taking place at 1pm or 7pm

3. Create cross promotions and offers


To maximise the World Cup opportunity, it’s important that you consider cross promotions. These will allow your shoppers to get everything they need quickly when they are rushing to get home in time for kick off.

KP Snacks’ Matt Collins says retailers should introduce more than one display of bestsellers in high footfall areas of the store. 

These offers should be promoted with PoS and displays to make sure shoppers notice them. 

Jack Matthews, owner of Bradley’s Supermarkets (Nisa) in Leicestershire, says that bringing in unique products has been an effective way for his store to drive sales. 

“We are bringing in beers from a local brewer who are running World Cup-themed lines,” Matthews explains. 

Offering shoppers unique products ahead of significant events is a great way to increase impulse sales. World Cup gatherings are special to consumers, so you can encourage them to trade up to premium lines. 

While cross promotions and offers are important, these can only be done successfully when you have the right core ranges and bestsellers. These may be different brands for different areas, so knowing your customer and what has previously worked is important. 

Equally, knowing which products sell best within each brand is a step forward in making the decision. 

“Lucozade Sport is the best-selling brand in the segment and can generate more than £1,000 a year, per store,” says Lucozade Ribena Suntory’s Lucy Grogut.

It’s important for retailers to offer consumers plenty of choice by offering different flavours and varieties within each brand, such as low and zero-sugar soft drinks, she adds. 

Do it: Create cross-promotions with beers, soft drinks and savoury snacks 

4. Create a strong display 


Once your have selected your products and offers, the final step is to display them in the most noticeable way possible. 

Jenny Leetch, brand manager at Costcutter Supermarket Groups, says decorating the shop will lift customers’ spirits, which can help drive sales. 

“The World Cup presents convenience retailers with an opportunity to increase sales of drinks and party food, as well as decorate their stores to get shoppers in the mood,” she explains. 

According to retailers, tapping into events and seasonal opportunities is really important to convenience stores  retailers therefore need to be well informed about the right brands to make the most of it. 

Matthews of Bradley’s Supermarket agrees and says that strong displays is crucial: “This year we will have cake for our shoppers and create displays with different flags.”

He says that a strong display will keep the customer interested and increase basket spend. 

Jonathan Wilstrop, Nisa trading controller, says retailers should create displays on gondola ends for savoury snacks, confectionery, beer and soft drinks.

“You need to give your customers ideas of what they need to buy for an enjoyable time in front of the TV,” he explains. 

Do it: Use bunting to create World Cup displays of key snacks and drinks

Two top retailers reveal their World Cup plans 

David Worsfold, Farrants, Surrey


“We don’t sell alcohol, we focus on the younger audience – so we are going to focus on the front of the shop where we will have kites, footballs and badminton sets.

We have made some efforts by bringing in World Cup sticker books and trading cards for children.

Other than that, we rely on suppliers to bring in World Cup-marketed products, and support them in store as they begin their consumer advertising.”

Jack Matthews, Bradley’s Supermarkets, Quorn, Leicestershire


“In my experience, the World Cup is always weather dependent. We stock up on beers and barbecue packs.

This year we are bringing in beer from our local brewer who are running a World Cup-themed beer. For children, we’ve stocked up with sticker books.

My advice to other retailers would be to keep up stock, have strong displays, and also to think of something unique to bring into the store.”


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