This year hundreds of retailers had their store assessed by mystery shoppers as part of the Independent Achievers Academy. Mystery shops provide retailers with an insight into which categories they are excelling in and which need improving.

The IAA went along with Susan Nash, trade communications manager for Mondelēz, who visited two stores to look at how they can improve their in-store display. Susan was also joined by retailer mentor Paul Mather, who was able to share his advice from innovations he’s put in place at his store in Sherston.

Retailer 1: Christine Hope, Hopes of Longtown

“The art of a good store is when a customer comes in and they say ‘Oh, that looks nice, let’s explore further’. Retailers need to always look at their store from a customer’s perspective. Look at your display, look at your stock, think forward and always try and refresh.”

Mentor: Paul Mather, Sherston Post Office Stores, Wiltshire

Retailer: Christine Hope, Hopes of Longtown, Longtown, Herefordshire

“We’ve looked at the planograms and changed some things around so the bestsellers appear further up. It’s been really useful to have some detailed information that we can implement straight away, as well as some long-term plans to put in place.”

Retailer 2: Kate Clark, Sean’s News

Expert Advice: Susan Nash, Mondelez International

“The way you display your products makes a huge difference to the way they sell and how your customers see them. It’s really important to highlight your range and constantly remind your consumers what you’ve got in store and inspire them to make purchases.”

Retailer: Kate Clark, ​​​​​​​Sean’s News, Upton upon Severn

“We’ve looked at merchandising in different areas of the shop. It’s been really good to get someone else’s insight because it’s so easy to get a bit tunnel-visioned about your own shop.”

GET INVOLVED: If you would like to take part in a similar project call 020 7689 3377 or tweet @betterretailing or let us know in the comments below!