The counter is a profit centre

If you believe the only purpose of your counter area is for you to take money, you are wrong.  The tillpoint is also a profit centre and is a key location in your business.

When you go to the supermarket, you may get frustrated by all the items on display as you queue up to pay, but they are there for a very good reason: they can increase the average sale per customer.  In fact, many retailers will tell you that the right product at the tillpoint will sell 40% quicker than anywhere else in the business.

There are five golden rules for counter displays:

Rule one
The price needs to be correct. Take the average sale per customer, divide it by three, and the most expensive item at the counter should not be more than one third of this average sale.
For example, if your average sale is £9, the most expensive item at the tillpoint should not be more than £3.

Rule two
Items placed at the tillpoint must be products that customers will want to purchase on impulse.
That is why we see so many chocolate bars displayed on counters. You could place seasonal products, small impulse items or “must have” products here.  Do not put slow sellers at the checkout, or expensive items – they will remain slow sellers.

Rule three
Research shows that you should display no more than three items at the checkout to maximise sales.
Keep it simple and let your customers take in what is on offer. They do not want to be bombarded with a whole host of items at the till.

Rule four
Give customers enough space to place their purchases and their wallets or purses on the counter and still feel comfortable.  I have often been to a newsagent where, as a customer, I wanted to wipe the area clean of products just to give myself enough space to pay.

Rule five
Tell the staff who serve at your tills that their job is to promote the items at the counter. At my local newsagency, when I go to pay, the staff always talk about the items they have by the till.
This gives them an opportunity to engage with their customers rather than just process transactions.


Adopt a profit centre mentality at your tillpoint.

2 Make sure the correct pricing strategy is used at the counter to maximise sales.

3 Give customers space at the counter to pay. Do not clutter this area.

4 Use impulse items by the till as an opportunity to engage with consumers.

5 Make sure you include seasonal items in your selection of products at the till.


This article doesn't have any comments yet, be the first!

Become a member to have your say