Friday 09th May 2014
A transcript of when Convenience Store magazine interviewed Balwinder Haire of Biddick Village Londis in Newcastle Upon Tyne
What's new in your store this week?
"We've gone live with our online delivery offering. It's run through www.cornershoponline.co.uk. Our average basket spend of online orders is about £33, which is amazing, and customer orders have been increasing in numbers every week. It's something that other independent retailers can get involved in and we've attracted some high-profile retailers to sign up to it. The website gives us a chance to take on the supermarkets with an easy-to-use offering."
What else is new in the store?
"We've really pushed sales of fresh in our store recently. When my parents refitted the store, we decided that we had to make fresh a priority. It was tough getting used to the wastage that comes with fresh, but it has certainly paid dividends and we're constantly expanding it with new products and linked sales."
How important is digital to your business?
"It's essential. As well as Cornershop Online, we also have facebook and twitter accounts, which help us target customers directly. Independent retailers need to be online to combat the multiples, especially as they move more into our channel. Being online means we can speak to our customers and let them know exactly what's going on in the store every day."
Any big plans in the pipeline?
"As well as continuing to grow Cornershop Online, we'll be looking at trying to get a Post Office Local at the store, and improving our fresh offering. I visited a Simply Fresh in Faversham, Kent, and I was impressed by its fresh display. That's just the sort of thing I want to introduce at our store. We're also looking at food to go as there are a couple of schools nearby so I think it will do well."
Article credits to Aidan Fortune/Convenience Store Magazine.