This sounds like a bit of a no-brainer but a shop bursting with stock is far more appealing than one where the shelves are half empty.

Sparsely stocked shelves send a message that the shop is not doing well and that tends to be self-fulfilling.

Shops full of stock encourage the customer to browse and investigate and possibly purchase more than they intended. It also says, “We probably have what you want so there is no need to go elsewhere.”

Keeping your shelves full can be expensive, so one way to create an appearance of large stock levels is to fill some shelves with non-perishable items like toys and stationary. Although these are slow moving items, it is better to have a full shelf of slow movers than an empty shelf.

This is again where fruit and vegetables come in. They are inexpensive to stock, take up space and look fantastic. They create freshness for your store that will stay in the customers mind (as long as you ensure it is always fresh).

Another way to create an appearance of high stock levels is to move items that you have a lot of to the edge of the shelves and items you have few of to the middle so that when a customer looks down a line of shelves they see full rows.

If you stock alcohol, take the beer out of the boxes and set up shelf displays, it is colourful and attractive.

This post is an extract from the e-book ‘So, you want to run a convenience store?’ by Peter Lamb. It is available for free download here.