I received a letter on Monday from a voucher-handling company I’ve used in the past warning me to expect a cost increase when the National Living Wage is introduced next April. “It will affect all service companies such as ours, including our competitors, and unfortunately these increases cannot alone be borne by our business,” it said.

While Lidl is already paying the living wage and keeping prices low, economists forecast that, ultimately, consumers will pay for inflation and small companies – like my voucher company – will be most likely to pass on costs.

But for every company that raises prices, another might look to keep them low as a point of difference.

Suppliers to your business will also be looking at their costs and trying to balance the books, so changing formats and margins are likely. Retailers, in turn, will need to check categories still stack up and focus on the areas with the best opportunity to grow turnover.

There are some tough decisions on the horizon, but RN will help you along the way.

For every company that raises prices, another might look to keep them low as a point of difference

Our 30 October issue features a special report on managing the transition to the National Living Wage, with different strategies from RN readers and industry experts.

In every issue we share ideas for growing and surviving such a major change to your business. This week, we sent 10 retailer judges around three great stores for our Come Shop With Me study tour and you can read their best ideas on pages 32-38. Next week, we will bring you all the best tips from the Local Shop Summit.

Every store is different, but the best ideas to try in your business are often the ones that have already worked for someone else.