Tonight Introductions Background to UK independent retailing scene – today Workshop Activity Feedback and discussion on key (business improvement) points Help available Question/Answer session – Business Link/Council/RWL Close
Introductions Business Link Retail Skills Advisor – Malcolm Clark Council Representative Retail Workshop – Paul Ford Do you have your pack of info? PLEASE fill in the contact information BEFORE you go tonight
Paul Ford – Retail Workshop Ltd Independent retailer – Manchester – 2 years Habitat UK – 14 years Independent retail group UK – 2 years Retail Workshop Ltd – 1991 ……….. providing services, consultancy and training only to UK independent outlets providing services, consultancy and training to UK retail trade organisations providing specialist services to Business Link for independent outlets … delivering this session to over 2,300 UK independent outlets in the last 16 years
Tonight’s objectives Discuss and highlight practical ideas that could help you to improve sales, efficiency, footfall and profitability in YOUR outlet Highlight programmes, initiatives and any funds to help you achieve the above Chance for you to meet with your local independent retail colleagues Quick review of Retail Today – independent scene
UK Independent retailing today UK retail generates £265 billion of turnover (last 12 months) Retail is Britain’s largest private sector employer West Midlands retail scene: - 250,000 people employed in 26,000 outlets - Urban – 16,300 shops (16,200 are independents – 99.4%) - Rural – 9,695 shops (9,600 are independents – 99%) Current statistics show turnover down 5.2% (UK) and 5.7% (WM by 6.3%) Fallout rate of independent shops currently at 1 in 8 ……….. but this could be as high as 1 in 5 in next 12 months !
UK Independent retailing today …….And it’s not getting any easier! Multiples and chains ‘eating’ into the traditional independent markets Increased consumer ‘buying on-line’ activity (July %) Growing costs of overheads in operating the business Continual squeeze on margins Customer expectations on prices and service levels
UK Independent retailing today Things aren’t easy and they could become even harder So, how come some independent outlets seem to be weathering the storm and some don’t? Tonight’s workshop is to look at that – highlight and discuss practical ideas on ….
Workshop group action ….. actions that YOU have taken that have: Increased good footfall into your outlet Improved your conversion rate of browsers to buyers Accessed and used IT in your business, effectively Reduced operating costs – without adversely affecting service levels Improved efficiency of the whole team – more sales, better standards, less costs
Workshop groups Objectives Highlight and discuss practical ideas on your given subject – that have worked for YOU Set out a list (of at least 5) ready to feedback to the main group Feedback session to discuss all ideas raised
Workshop groups Need to: Decide quickly on a ‘scribe’ and ‘feedback presenter’ Be constructive and consider all options raised (within timescale) Use your own practical experience and ideas Consider how other shops good ideas can be adapted to your own use
Workshop groups …… and be ready to feedback to the main group in 30 minutes only! BUT you will only have 5 minutes to feedback your ideas ! Any questions?
Feedback Don’t forget – you only have 5 minutes for you to present your list!
Training Retail Skills – Service, selling, layout, presentation etc. IT Skills – website design/management, database, graphics … and more Management Skills – marketing, people management, cash flow etc. Specialist skills – e.g. Bookkeeping etc.
Contact Information Malcolm Clark Paul Ford/Retail Workshop
Question/Answer session Your chance to ask the panel on any retail/business improvement related topic: Business Link Advisor Local council/BID representative Retail Workshop Ltd
Research Customers prefer good local shops Customers prefer to see the same faces Expect a better service from their local shops Have to be competitively priced MUST enjoy their shopping trip (or they’ll go elsewhere next time) Need to feel that they’re made welcome and not an intrusion Your reputation is key to more customers and footfall Customers expect YOU to be experts in your field
Bad news Competitors will continue to ‘cherry pick’ your better products There will continue to be a squeeze on prices and margins The internet will not go away – buying and researching online (by consumers) will continue/grow Customer service expectations are getting even higher – shoppers want better service levels
Good news Use of internet and IT technology is available to all businesses – good prices/ease of use/training House prices are (slowly) starting to move – up! The role of the independent shops is now seen as crucial to local economies Customers WANT to shop with you / WANT (good) independents
BUT Your improvements won’t happen on their own! You will need to: Be proactive Be constructively critical of your own operation Work hard on your weaknesses Plan, manage and control your own improvement actions In short ……………………………
…. it’s up to YOU
Many thanks for your time tonight Hope you found it worthwhile Hope you’ll put into action the ideas YOU have generated (can you afford NOT too?). Look back in the handout information available from tonight Follow up help from Business Link West Midlands Have a safe journey home