Booker’s latest store of the future at Singh’s Premier in Sheffield has grown sales by £30,000 a week since its refit 12 months ago.

Located on Teynham Road, the 1,750sq ft site, owned by Mandeep Singh and his two brothers Bal and Vrinder underwent a revamp in spring 2021 at a cost of £400,000.

It boasts a Refresh@Premier drinks station with eight hot and cold self-serve machines; an in-house delivery service branded ‘Singh’s Drop’; an extended ‘beer cave’, offering chilled alcohol beverages for purchase, as well as food to go and an extensive range of frozen, chilled and fresh options.

Since the refit, footfall has increased by 20% and more than 6,500 shoppers now visit every week. Average margin has increased by 6% to 28%, with average basket spend now totalling £9.85.

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On a store visit last week, Booker’s sales director Martyn Parkinson told betterRetailing.com the store generated £1,000 a day from self-serve drinks machines alone last summer, boasting a margin of up to 65%.

Sales across chilled are currently outperforming all other categories, and space for it trebled during the refit, with weekly sales growing from £1,500 to £6,000. Parkinson said a move towards multipacks and the introduction of local suppliers helped contribute to the rise.

In addition, sales of frozen food jumped from £500 a week to £2,000, encouraged by meal deal promotion stickers on the front of freezer doors to help entice customers.

“Customers don’t want to look on the shelf edge label to see what’s on offer,” said Singh. “With a sticker showcasing a meal deal they can quickly see what they can get and for what price which is likely to pull them in quicker.”

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In addition, a beer cave, sitting at the back of the store was installed costing £30,000. It offers beer kegs, ice cream and a vast selection of popular wines, beers and ciders. Elsewhere, the introduction of a Vaping@Premier range on the shop floor, which was moved from behind the counter, contributes to £5,000 a week in sales, with margins of up to 45% available.

Parkinson acknowledged that although not all retailers have the capacity to invest £400,000, the intention is for elements of the format to be taken and introduced separately into other Premier stores at a lower cost.

“Different symbol group retailers have come to visit Mandeep’s store,” he said. “As soon as they do they are really keen to adopt something similar into their stores.”

When asked what advice he had for other store owners who might be hesitant to undergo a refit, Singh said: “Just go for it. I invite anyone to come and take a look at my store and see how well it is performing. Retailers do have the ability to create challenges when it comes to introducing an idea, but they have to just go for it – it all pays off in the end.”

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