Our blog post today, is from http://richardshorney.blogspot.co.uk/ who has kindly provided some great tips of how to beat the supermarkets.
Throughout the UK independent businesses are struggling to survive as supermarkets move into their towns. But it doesn’t have to be the case, hardworking entrepreneurial small business can compete with Tesco and thrive.
1. You are the right size to adapt to trends,initiatives,ideas quickly! Use this power to your advantage.
2.Regularly refit and refurbish your store.
3.Offer better service – ok just about every book, magazine or pundit will tell you this, but really are you honestly offering better service? Do your staff smile and greet people? Do you offer advice and helpful assistance, are your staff well mannered? Go the extra mile!
4.Open early, late or at lunch – the majority of the population works Monday to Friday 09:00 to 17:30 so be open before 09:00 and after 17:30 and don’t shut at lunch!!
5. Offer value added services – This could take the form of free recipes around the shop (do this right and you’re not only providing a benefit to the consumer, but can also up sell them the other ingredients), offer dieting guides for those looking to lose weight, those with allergies or food intolerances.
6. Provide demonstrations or workshops – show customers something interesting and different
7. Sell an experience – make shopping at your store an experience, make it a ‘destination’
8. Promote a cause – align yourselves with a cause that you believe in and that will appeal to your customers, this concept has worked well for Starbucks with Fairtrade coffee.
9. Have a Point of Difference – make sure you differentiate your offering for example only sell local produce or organic produce.
10. Leverage their marketing – use their marketing and their name to get yourself in the local press
11. Offer choices that Tesco can’t – Tesco will never be able to offer specialist products that cater to specifics of the local markets by the nature of being a big business it just doesn’t have the flexibility, just look at the rise of the specialist deli’s throughout Britain for an example of this in action.
12. Offer incentives to get customers through the door – There’s nothing to stop the small retailer offering incentives to get shoppers through the door, and while Tesco’s incentives are limited to low prices they can be as imaginative as a small business. For example a baker could offer to trade in old for new on a loaf of bread, while you’ll no doubt lose money on the loaf most shoppers will buy something else while in the shop bringing the overall sale up to a level of profit.
13. Loyalty schemes – Print some simple cards, get a cheap stamp and offer one free for every 10 purchased or free bottle of wine back for ever £100 spent – be inventive think of what will attract your customers and ideally have a higher value to them than it cost to you.
14. Home Deliveries – most of the top supermarkets offer home deliveries. Offer a home delivery service with a guarantee that you’ll replace anything the customer is not happy with.
If you’re a small business trying to compete with supermarkets then join Town Teams Unite on FB