After a tour of Ancoats General Store, retailers learned key lessons from Amazon Go in Seattle and convenience stores in the Far East and had the opportunity to quiz three leading retailers
How Mital Morar drives innovation
Mital Morar, Ancoats General Store, Manchester
Target your shoppers
“Our location and clientele have enabled us to do what we’ve wanted to do, but I’ve targeted this location and clientele on purpose,” says Mital.
“We have another store which has a very diverse customer base so provide halal, kosher, Jamaican and Eastern European food.”
Take inspiration from hospitality
“Bars and restaurants are one of the most creative and fast-evolving sectors. I look to hospitality for inspiration every day. This is a big interest for me and I like to portray it in my shop,” he says.
Tap into local marketing
Mital explains: “When we first opened, we had a lot of newspapers and bloggers come to take a look.
“Because of our partnership with local businesses, we’ve been able to ride this wave of interest. We’re also very active on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.”
What Vince Malone will do to improve his shop
Vince Malone, Tenby Stores, Pembrokeshire
Mind map with your team
“After all the ideas shared today, I’ll put everything down on paper. There’ll be too many ideas to achieve, but it’s important to get it all written down,” says Vince.
Get out of your store
“We often look at the local competition, but sometimes we need to go further,” he says.
“Days like today allow me to step back from the day-to-day working and see where we need to take our business.”
Benchmark your shop
“We used the IAA to benchmark our shop two years ago, we didn’t do it the year before because we weren’t ready. That’s actually when we should have benchmarked, because it would have helped us get ready quicker,” he says.
“We’re actually looking at getting our customers to benchmark us this year so we can see what we need to do better from their point of view.”
How Dave Hiscutt will build on his success
Dave Hiscutt, Londis Westham Road, Dorset
Don’t be complacent
“Being recognised as Overall Best Shop last year was incredible. It was a brilliant way to end the year, but we’ll continue to benchmark because we don’t want to fall behind,” he says.
Take your time to review
“Benchmarking is not just a tickbox exercise. You should spend two or three weeks on it and make plans,” he says.
“We’ve used the benchmarking process to train up new managers. By using it to challenge ourselves, we get a lot out of it.
Get a fresh look
“It’s really valuable getting a second pair of eyes to look at the store. In the past, collaborating with other people has helped us improve our processes and make our store layout more effective,” he says.
Amazon Go and Far East Study tour sessions
Amazon Go takes convenience retailing to another level. Every retailer should think about how they provide a great customer experience Louise Banham, Newtrade
Young people in Japan can buy everything from their local c-store. From ready meals to comics and sports tickets to baseball matches Nick Shanagher, Newtrade