SNAP spending reached an all-time high of $113.8 billion in fiscal year 2021, according to the USDA. This is largely due to recent economic challenges in the last few years and the expansion of SNAP benefits during the pandemic.
Optimize Your Space for More Summer Profits
During the Summer months, customers will be pouring into c-stores in search for their favorite products. As your store begins to gain heavier foot traffic, prepare for the increase in customers by optimizing your store's space. Many store owners find that their store is lacking organization or structure that can be hindering their customer's overall experience. Learn how the clutter can affect your customers and the steps to improve your c-store's space to satisfy and compel customers to make multiple purchases.
Organizing Your Store
A disorganized and cluttered store is frustrating to most customers. Whether they are from out-of-town or are local, not being able to find what they are looking for will most likely result in fewer items being purchased. Many customers may also be turned away if your store is not operating at the best level causing you to be considered inconvenient. Help your customers spend less time in the store by following some of the following steps:
- Prioritize Your Inventory; figure out what products are not selling and cut them from your restock list
- Optimize Your Space; the highest selling products should be the easiest to find
- Simple Signage; cut down on unnecessary displays by removing duplicate, outdated, or hard to read signs that may be confusing customers
- Use Verticle Displays; display signage on different levels vertically in order to maximize your space
- Select a Winning Layout; create an impulse driven environment to drive up sales
- Optimize Your Space; by using your checkout counter, walls, windows, and other areas for product or signage display
Most items that are purchased come from a shelf. It is important to be picky about your shelving. It is recommended that "shelves stay at 54 inches to ensure shopper safety by minimizing the hazards caused by climbing or reaching over one’s head". Here are some of the options for you to consider:
- Gravity Feed Shelves
"Gravity will move the product to the front of the shelf. This is usually achieved with a 15, 30, or 45-degree down-slant. Midwest Retail Services can help you with and gravity feed shelf — from rollers to plastic slides."
- Pusher Systems
"Usually intended for smaller products, often used by the pharmacy for over the counter medicines. Pusher trays and channels are great ways to keep your product faced to the front and organized."
- Front and back fencing with dividers
"Whether it is wire, steel, or acrylic it’s a great way to separate product on shelves."
Profitable Product Placement
When trying to take advantage of the space you have in your c-store you should be conscious of where you put your products. To figure out what is working track your store's traffic and place promotional bins, displays, and weekly sale items along these routes to compel customers to make purchases. You should be tracking which items are purchased most often in your store. Put these items as well as impulse products in popular areas and near the registers to help make a one item sale into multiple item purchases. Being aware of where you are placing items in your store will maximize your space and allow your products to work for you.
Using popular traffic routes, smart shelving options, and de-cluttering your c-store will get you to your profit goals this Summer.