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New focus on fresh sees sales flourish

A busy Scottish convenience store has seen sales grow across all categories after the shop was re-laid to give a new focus on chilled goods.

Pinkies in Musselburgh was already performing well, but managing director Dan Brown, wanted to encourage shoppers to follow a different route round the store and instigated the changes.

The entire store has been moved round and an island chiller installed close to the entrance to showcase an expansive selection of meal solutions.

A new food to go area has been incorporated with pizzas made to order in store along with a breakfast deal, freshly made sandwiches, cakes, sweet treats and an ice cream counter is set to launch this summer, with the ice cream to be made in store.

Dan said: “We wanted to make much more of a focus on the chilled range and we felt we had been giving too much space to ambient. 

“The theory is that when the customer comes in, we drive them though the fresh and chill, on to the food to go and the meal solutions.

“We plan to make even more of our own food to go offer and currently make a lot of the products on site with the intention to increase that. As a store we’re planning to lead with meal solutions and meals for tonight.”

As part of the changes, time was spent working on the range in the store with many ambient SKUs removed, reducing items from two or three facings to just one.

Dan said: “We have the same amount of space for grocery since the re-lay, but the range is significantly smaller, with most products offering just one brand and the Co-op own label. 

“We want to make the focus all about fresh and chilled rather than grocery and along with the new island chiller, we are going to install more spot merchandising chillers,” said Dan.

And the alterations to the 5,500 sq.ft. store are already showing their worth with sales increasing across the whole store.

“Our chill sales are up massively as a result of the move and the general grocery sales have also gone up,” said Dan.

“We will continue to focus on food to go, Co-op premium lines and our new ice cream and hopefully will continue to enjoy sales growth.”