Female shoppers make it happen
Research conducted by respected research group Nielsen provides useful insights for our franchisees and their front-of-store staff. It reveals that when it comes to grocery shopping, females are the main decision makers. So, how can you attract them to your store and convince them to purchase more than they had planned?

Nielsen found that what women are looking for is:
• A conveniently located store;
• An interior layout that makes it easy to navigate the aisles;
• Good lighting;
• Well-stocked shelves, product prices clearly displayed;
• Unambiguous information on promotions and other special offers;
• An adequate number of efficient checkout counters.

Nielsen’s research also established that good customer service is important to 90% of shoppers. And although 84% of them claim to plan in advance what they want to purchase, they then succumb to special offers etc.

This means that effective merchandising, including the positioning of special offers where customers can see them, is vital. Alert franchisees can use the above findings to attract more customers to their stores
and increase ticket value per customer with relatively little effort.

How can I help you?

The industrial revolution is a thing of the past. The information revolution is ongoing but there are strong
pointers that the next big thing is the service revolution. So says Catherine DeVrye. Catherine is a former Australian Executive Women of the Year, best-selling author and highly soughtafter speaker on business topics. She fervently believes that for businesses and individuals alike, the only way to stay relevant going forward is to adopt a true service culture.

Catherine is quick to point out that delivering service does not mean “being subservient to others”; rather, it should be interpreted as meaning “being useful to others” or “truly wanting to assist”. She also reminds us that
customers are the most important people in a service team’s universe, or at least they
should be! Far too often, store staff seem to perceive customers as an interruption of the work
they are doing. Just think of a merchandiser packing shelves. In theory, should a customer approach them with a question, they should willingly drop whatever they are doing and ask, “How can a help you?” And the smile should be sincere. In practice, this doesn’t often happen. Low-level staff aren’t the only culprits here.
Inexplicably, even business owners fall into the trap of thinking that interaction with customers is less important than routine tasks. They sit in their offices poring over spreadsheets and feel that they are working hard. Should a customer dare to interrupt them, they will claim that they are too busy. Catherine has a profound
message for them:

“Try to operate without customers for a period of, say, 30 days, and see where tinkering with spreadsheets will get you.”

What’s your most valuable asset?
In response to this question, the typical entrepreneur will most likely answer “my business”. Some might say “my home” and the petrolheads among them would say “my car”. Unfortunately, they would all be wide off the mark.

In reality, an entrepreneur’s most valuable asset is time. It’s an irreplaceable commodity. Falling into the trap of “busyness” by doing tasks that could just as easily be delegated to a member of your team means that your time is wasted on low-level work. Not ideal if you want your business to grow. “You don’t understand”, I hear you say, “if I don’t do it myself it won’t be done properly.” Should this be the case then you need to take
part of the blame. More specifically, you need to ask yourself whether you trained the person properly before delegating the task to them.

If so, and refresher training doesn’t result in noticeable improvements, replace this person
with someone who can do the job. That’s what it means to be a leader. Once you have the delegation thing down
pat, you can spend your time doing more profitable tasks like talking to customers in the store, finding out what you are doing right, and what you could be doing better. That’s what successful retailers do.

Google Keep
This is an incredibly useful extension, available to anyone who uses Google Chrome. And it’s free.
You can use it to make notes, or to set reminders for yourself to timeously attend to essential tasks
and more. Try it and you’ll be hooked. Just type “keep.google.com” into your browser, go through a once-off installation process that is quick and painless and enjoy this nifty little tool. Once you use it, you won’t understand how you ever managed without it.