ARTD advice hits the spot

Scisset Supermarket in Wakefield has had proven success using the Blueprint guides for several years, but in preparation for the expected hot UK summer, owners Harry and Kully Kaur enlisted the help of Blueprint scheme director Ross Shelley to update their off-licence offering.

The Kaurs have had their ales, lagers and ciders merchandised to the Blueprint guidelines for many years, but were keen to update their fixture using the new 2005 planogram, which for the first time encompasses all the different regions within one document.

“The new style is a much better format. It is clear, concise and the category information is really useful,” explains Kully.
“As well as the plans for merchandising the fixtures, there is also a lot of really valuable information on the value of brands and the different regional influences. It’s become our bible for all things beer.”

The new planogram also focuses on the importance of chilled alcohol, which the Kaurs were also looking to encourage ahead of the predicted heatwave expected this summer. The store has an extensive chilling facility, so as well as revamping the chilled beer section, Ross introduced key white wines that should be chilled and a core selection of Alcoholic Ready to Drinks (ARTDs).

While the Kaurs had merchandised the rest of their off-licence to the Blueprint guidelines, ARTDs is one area they believed required more focus. With Ross’s help they re-merchandised both the ambient and chilled fixture to reflect the industry best advice for this category.

Kully says: “We’ve noticed that the ARTD market is growing and we’re making more and more sales, so it made sense that we re-look at what we were stocking and how it was being merchandised. The Blueprint advice has been spot-on for the other categories so we trust the recommendations made for this too.

“Ross pointed out that we were duplicating several flavours and had key brands missing. He also suggested we stock up on 70cl varieties which we were also missing – and since doing so sales have rocketed. In just a couple of weeks sales have already had a boost, with ARTDs in particular picking up by 15%.

“For the spring and summer months, it’s useful to be prepared for what will hopefully be a warm spell, and now we have our chiller in hand I expect sales to continue to rise.”

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