Mark Fletcher reminds retailers of the importance of managing your magazine department, and the need to push back on customers who complain about product location changes.

I am often asked for photos of changes made to the layout of the newsagency based on what I write here, or when I speak at meetings and seminars.

This photo, taken not long ago, shows part of the magazine department. It runs down this fixture to the back wall where we have 250+ full-face pockets.

The display area to the left of the main magazine fixture changes regularly as does what is in front of the magazine fixture to the front of the store. We also adjust the layout of the magazines regularly.

Shoppers are more fickle than ever. We need to keep our stores fresh and appealing. We need to push back on those few customers who complain about product location changes.

The key point I want to make here is:

Everything changes, nothing stays the same. I think this is essential in retail today. Shoppers are more fickle than ever. We need to keep our stores fresh and appealing. We need to push back on those few customers who complain about product location changes.

We need to lay our business out to maximise the return.

I have focused on the magazine department in this image, as it is the part of the business many newsagents continue to be reluctant to change. Some do, but not enough.

We are in a fight with supermarkets and other retailers. If we do not change our in-store offer we will lose the battle. Range and supply volume – they are topics for another day.

This post is about the part of magazines over which we have control – how we lay them out in our businesses.