This week Retail Newsagent published their twice-yearly guide to best-selling magazines. The great thing about this type of guide is that it provides a benchmark that we can check our range against to see where the holes are.

Earlier this week I looked at the cost of stocking magazines and found that at 90p per full magazine facing per week we had 40 titles that justified their full display space. Armed with the latest Bestsellers Guide I can see which magazine titles don’t earn us enough to cover their display costs.

We use a SparPos epos system so are easily able to produce a sales report that shows the weekly profit generated by all the magazine titles that we stock. For this exercise I need to look at the poorest performers to identify the titles that need to be culled. The question is where to set the line?

A third of a facing costs us 30p per week so if we take that as the potential cull line we have created a rule to go by. Clearly if we are selling one of two copies it will be sensible to try and capture these customers and convert them to ‘shop save’ on a regular basis.

The way to go about this sizeable task is to break it down into easy chunks targeting the most valuable, higher volume magazine categories first, such as Women’s Weeklies, and then progressing through the rest of the range in a planned manner.

I will report back soon on the actions that we have taken as a result of the new Bestsellers magazine guide.