The importance of in-store services has been highlighted throughout the industry this year.

At the IGD Convenience Retailing Summit, for example, Jerry Marwood, Blakemore Trade Partners managing director, said 52% of volume sales in his company’s most recently-opened store came from foodservice, while 30,000 cups of Costa coffee a week are sold in its stores.

Here, we take a look at six innovative and popular in-stores services from readers’ shops.

Food delivery

sandeep just eat

Name: Sandip Kotecha

Shop: Londis

Location: Cheltenham

Recognising the popularity of delivery apps, Sandip registered with takeaway ordering service Just Eat and offers a food-to-go delivery service. For a £2 delivery charge and minimum £10 order, customers can access his full food-to-go range along with desserts such as luxury cheesecakes. “In our first week on Just Eat, delivering just food to go, we had just over £400 worth of food-to-go sales, with an average spend of £14,” he says.

Laundry

Independent convenience retail

Name: Kuldepp Singh Lalli

Shop: Premier Southglade

Location: Bestwood, Nottinghamshire

Kuldeep’s customers can wash and dry their clothes 24/7 with the Revolution Launderette in his carpark. It contains two washing machines and a dryer and users pay £4 for a standard 8kg wash or £8 for an 18kg wash. Temperatures and spin cycles can be changed via a digital screen. For customers in a hurry, a spin in the 8kg dryer costs £1.

Party balloons

donna duddenName: Mark & Donna Dudden

Shop: Albany News

Location: Cardiff

Mark and Donna recently began offering a balloon stuffing service. For £5, customers can buy teddy bears or flowers, for example, inside balloons. Donna says she has seen a lot of repeat custom and the service has created interest in their store, as well as an additional revenue stream.

Postal service

Welly Post

Name: Lorraine & Trish Lettley

Shop:E J Teare Newsagents,

Location: Wellington, Somerset

When Lorraine and Trish realised the cost of stamps was culling their greetings cards sales they set up the Welly Post, a local post service that delivers to roughly 12,000 homes around Wellington. More than 400 letters are now delivered at a cost of 30p every week, with thousands posted during the Christmas period.

Grind your own coffee

Guy Warner coffeeName: Guy Warner

Shop: Warner’s Budgens,

Location: Winchcombe, Gloucestershire

The store offers a self-service and grind coffee bean station where customers can choose from five different bean varieties and grind and much as they require. The service costs £2.39 per 100g and hot water is also available to make fresh cups of the coffee customers have just ground.

Magazine orders 
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Name: Paul Patel

Shop:WH Smith Local

Location: Dibden Purlieu, Hampshire

Paul uses Smiths News’ SNnapp to get any of the thousands of magazines available when customers request them – usually the next day if ordered before 3pm. This has made him the go-to place for anyone wanting a niche magazine. He also reserves magazines for regulars. “Sales of Leisure Painter have grown to more than 10 a month because people know they can come to me,” he says.

To read the full feature see this week’s Retail Newsagent.

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