Chris Dillon joins One Stop’s Andrew King and John Miller on a tour of three stand-out One Stop stores in the Midlands.

The first stop was Shelley & Anu Goel’s One Stop Gospel Lane store in Solihull, Birmingham. “Our whole approach to the competition is different,” says Shelley. “We acknowledge our customers the second they come into the store. Not many shops do that.”

Top tips

  1. Measure your store. Shelley has worked out his profit per square foot, which helps him keep his store on track. He takes £23 per square foot a week in his shop.

  2. Know your customers. “My wife knows the name of every single customer. Some of them just come in for the conversation.
  3. Lead by example. “We do all the dirty work. I don’t ask my staff to do anything I wouldn’t want to do. We get stuck in.”

See the full profile of Shelley and Anu's store here

The next visit was with Sunder Sandher, owner of One Stop working with Royals in Leamington Spa.

Top tips

  • Make sure you deliver. “I’m on Deliveroo with Heineken. I double up my pricing and they take 30%+VAT. It’s about £40 a transaction and we do three or four a day. Extra sales for nothing.”

  • Always look for savings. “I installed acrylic doors on my chillers and I’m now saving £4,800 a year.”
  • Communicate value. “When I was with my previous symbol, price-marked packs were key. But now I’ve got that perception that I sell value for money throughout my store."

To round off the day, we joined Gaz Bains ahead of the relaunch of his shop on Belgrave Road in Coventry. The store now has a more expansive food-to-go selection, Slush Puppie machine and offers shoppers more value.

Top tips

  • Keep moving. “Don’t be complacent. Use your EPoS system to analyse your business and if something isn’t working, shout out there and ask for help.”

  • Get involved in the community. “We had a big launch with food for everyone and a raffle. We want to get the community back and say look after us and we’ll look after you.”
  • Get a strong craft beer range. “Alcohol is massive for us now. We’ve got more ales, cider and craft beer. Pistonhead lager is growing for us.”