chiller-guyFresh and chilled foods are the categories where there is a huge divide between independent and multiple shops in the convenience market. Fresh and chilled is a big profit opportunity but doing it well requires a different skill set to selling soft drinks, snacks and confectionery.

Speaking to trade magazine Retail Newsagent this week, Booker chief executive Charles Wilson advises: “Get the milk, bread and cheese right because most of the volume and value is in that area.”

There are two parts to his advice which are helpful. Firstly, the need to focus and to set standards and achieve those standards. Second, that to transform your local shop can involve incremental steps. Break down your move into new areas into small, bite-sized chunks and work your way up to a full fresh and chilled offer by increments.

Getting shoppers used to buying bread and milk in your shop will get them thinking about picking up a basket, which is when you break through to the next level in convenience.