For eight years, Nimerjeet Bains and her husband ran their store in Treherbert, South Wales, independently of any fascia, but last year they took the plunge and joined Bargain Booze.
“It’s a move we’re pleased we made,” says Nimerjeet.
Despite the store already having a good, long-established reputation with a troupe of loyal shoppers, being part of the franchise has increased their sales as they’re able to offer a lot more.
“The kids still come in for sweets, but the adults can now buy a wide range of food and household items,” says Nimerjeet. “In the evenings we sell a lot of alcohol, and we sell even more now that we’re stocking a far wider range.”
The family-run operation also benefits heavily from its location near a tourist attraction, which means they have regular footfall from passers-by. However, they still post leaflets to houses within a close proximity to market the store’s latest deals.
Nimerjeet Bains, Bargain Booze
Location: Treherbert, South Wales
Hours: 8am-10pm Monday-Saturday, 10am-9.30pm Sunday
Trading since: November 2015 as a Bargain Booze, independently since 2007
Staff: Two people support the store on an ad-hoc basis
Size: Approximately 1,300sq ft
Style: One of four convenience stores in a long parade, close to a train station that attracts shoppers on their way to Cardiff. The store also gets passing trade from tourists due to its proximity to Brecon Beacons National Park.
“We do that every time we implement a new promotion,” she says. “The promotions are renewed every six weeks.”
The store has several promotions in place that are marketed as gifts for teachers, alongside generic promotions on multipacks of alcohol. “Our deals on whiskey, and Foster’s and Strongbow 15-packs are flying,” she adds.
However, the Bains’ store, which sits in a parade that includes a Post Office, a Co-op and a Spar, is currently struggling with an issue affecting its competitive edge.
“We’ve applied twice to have the Lottery, but have had no response,” she says. “The Spar and the Post Office both do it, and a Premier opened up nearby a month before we became a Bargain Booze – now they sell Lottery tickets.”
She says the store is missing out on a huge opportunity as several locals have complained about having to queue in the other stores for Lotto tickets.
“Our customers are always asking when we’ll be getting the Lottery in,” she says. “They say that they have to go to Spar, which means we’re losing out on impulse sales.”
In spite of this, Nimerjeet says the future is looking bright. “Bargain Booze have redesigned the store’s layout, and we’re able to stock much more variety now,” she says. “I’d definitely recommend Bargain Booze to other retailers.
Some stores don’t have much personality – we go out of our way to be friendly
“We’ve seen our profits go up since the changeover, and they’ve provided us with continuous help on merchandising, ranges and staff training.”
The couple have plans to add another Bargain Booze franchise to their business, with Nimerjeet saying she’d like to build a chain of the stores in the vicinity.
But there’s one thing shoppers get in store that remains independent of Bargain Booze – the great service they receive from the husband and wife team.
“People come into our store because they can talk to us as well as pick up their shopping,” Nimerjeet says. “Sometimes other stores don’t have much personality – but we enjoy meeting people and go out of our way to be friendly.
“We really make an effort to get to know the locals.”