With the cold winter months a thing of the past, and daffodils blooming across the landscape, it can only be time for Spring!
And with a change in season, customers will be gearing up to Easter, Bank Holidays – including the upcoming Coronation, which will see communities nationwide coming together in the spirit of fun and friendship and reconnecting with their neighbours, offering savvy retailers numerous opportunities to increase footfall in store and encourage basket spend.
Sunshine and warmer temperatures inspire outdoor dining
With more people working from home – a factor which drove in-home lunchtime sales by 88% in 2020 – combined with the improving weather and easing of lockdown restrictions, thoughts for many will turn to outdoor dining, BBQ’s and refreshing snacks.
And with this shift towards at home outdoor dining and healthier eating habits, ketchup, mayonnaise, salad dressings, mustard and other Table Sauces are becoming more popular so make sure your fixture is fully stocked.
Brands are crucial for this category and its essential to know the best-sellers – shoppers want to see the likes of Hellmann’s and Heinz and may not be prepared to buy alternatives, and if space permits, consider adding lighter versions of the best sellers as 40% of consumers use these.
And to generate additional sales, why not maximize the BBQ season’s potential by grouping relevant foods such as chicken, sausages, burgers, buns, salads, and Table Sauces together to encourage incremental purchasing. Include some hot, spicy and specialty dressings too as taste is the #1 category driver.
And for those refreshing snacks, think Ice-Cream! The weather has a huge impact on ice-cream sales – on a sunny day, sales can jump up by 400%! Make sure your cabinet is clean and in a highly visible, prominent position – there’s nothing more off-putting that a messy and dirty cabinet.
Now is a good time to review your range against our recommended advice here, and make sure that you stock a good range of impulse ice-creams – Choc Snacks, Adult Refreshment, Filled Cones and Kid’s products, as well as tubs and dessert ice creams which have seen a significant increase in sales over the last 12 months as dining in has become the new dining out. And remember, if people don’t know you sell ice-cream they might not come in to find out. Use bright and branded POS in-store and make sure you use on-street signage to flag up that you sell ice-cream – almost anyone can be tempted! Simply telling people know that you sell ice-cream could increase sales by up to 15%!
With Spring comes Spring Cleaning
With the pandemic resulting in 72% of us cleaning more frequently and shoppers buying more heavily into hygiene ranges, cleaning is fast becoming an essential habit. So it’s likely that this year will be like no other so convenience retailers need to ensure they are fully catering for the Home Cleaning opportunity.
Get it right and it is an opportunity to grow sales, basket spend and customer loyalty, so we would advise retailers to review homecare ranging and merchandising without delay.
Home Cleaning can be a complex and confusing category for retailers to get right, so make sure your Home Cleaning fixture is easy to shop and ensure you are reflecting our updated ranging and merchandising advice here. Merchandise by room and ensure that you’re stocking the best sellers.
And spring cleaning isn’t just for your customers! Now is a great time to take stock of your store and ensure that its offering continues to meet the changing needs of your customers. Added to which, it presents a great opportunity to give your store a good clean after the pandemic, as dusty and messy stores are off-putting to customers. De-clutter and make sure your windows are clean as sunlight will highlight all those dusty corners often forgotten. A quick in-store spring clean will make your store look fresh and appealing to customers.
Get involved with your local community
For many retailers, local communities have come to rely upon their store over the last year to keep them safe and fed. With restrictions easing and vaccinated shoppers potentially keen to get out and about and potentially return to their old pre-pandemic shopping behaviour, now could be a good time to get involved in your local community to thank them for their custom and remind them of the central role you play in your community.
With many schools potentially planning to end what has been a difficult academic year with a summer fair, why not get in touch with the school to offer your support? You could get involved in the organizing committee, produce and display promotional material, sponsor a food stand, or offer the grand prize at their raffle.
It’ll be a great way to again be part of bringing the community together and at the same time reinforce your position at the heart of it, which will pay in the long run by encouraging loyalty and footfall.
See Engaging your local community for more tips and ideas