What is the most successful idea you’ve ever tried out in your business?
Taster evenings and events have been fantastic. We focus on these at Christmas and have special offers, sampling and Christmas order forms. This is hugely popular and we do it every year. Customers feel rewarded, so it’s a way of saying thank you.
What is the best advice you have received?
Don’t overstock or understock. It’s a fine line. Customer service is a priority but controlling stock is an essential and you have to get it right.
Who is your retail inspiration?
Charles Wilson, Booker’s chief executive. He turned his business around. He told me there was no difference between what he does and what I do, it’s just that he is looking at bigger numbers. If I could be half as successful as him I would be happy.
What do you think is the biggest missed opportunity that independent retailers should cash in on?
Promotions and pricemarked packs. Many retailers get hung up on margins and don’t realise that high volumes are more profitable. It’s a way of being different from the multiples.
What’s next for your business?
We’ll focus on growing margins and streamlining the business, offering more promotions and pricemarked packs. We’ll also look at mobile devices to communicate directly with customers and send vouchers to their phones