Premier retailers Linda and Dennis Williams are fighting back against a decline in footfall and a discounter on their doorstep by refocusing their business on value and food to go.

The couple, who run Broadway Premier in Oxgangs, Edinburgh, have overhauled their store with a new fascia, a deli food to go offer, and permanent low pricing in nearly every category.

“Our ethos for the store is that value is important,” says Dennis. “It builds loyalty.”

A new Aldi just behind the shop will open in January, so the Williams, supported by Booker, have investigated everything that Aldi does and doesn’t do well to give them the edge with local shoppers. It includes expanding spirits, bringing in a stand-out miniatures display and vaping products, and ramping up their focus on healthier lines.

They have made use of Booker’s ‘every day low prices’ and have implemented ‘two for £1’ deals to drive sales of standard bags of crisps and chocolate bars. “The increase in sales more than outweighs the loss in margin,” Linda says. “And through the ‘two for £1’ we’ve even doubled our sales on Euroshopper’s 50p chocolate bar!”

The Williams’ have designed their own deli brand – The Premier Deli – which offers locally-supplied pies, sausage rolls, breakfast products and cakes, and freshly-made sandwiches and salads. Just five weeks in, they are already selling more than £500-worth a week.

“We were losing footfall at around 100 customers a week. We’re starting to gain footfall back and, last week, sales hit a record high,” adds Linda. “Basket spend is up by £1 on last year. To be successful, driving footfall is something we all have to push for.”

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