In retail the ultimate goal is to SELL MORE! These days, consumer habits and expectations change rapidly. To meet increasing sales goals, you must adapt quickly to the changing landscape. Sometimes you have all the right plans and strategy in place, but the sales don’t follow. Why? Poor execution.
So, what can you do? Many of the largest and most successful retailers in the world conduct store audits. Audits cover a wide range of topics, including: eliminating waste and overspending, increasing operational efficiencies, and ensuring every detail of the customer experience is consistently taken care of. Audits are important for keeping management in-the-know on what is happening at the store level. They are also important for holding employees accountable to the company standard. However, if they aren’t used to implement impactful changes they are no more useful than busy work. You can organize your audits into categories and then prioritize them to help employees consistently execute changes throughout your retail store. This will also help you target any non-compliancy issues to avoid fines, de-branding of your business and possibly loss of employment. Below we have addressed the most common non-compliancy issues in the industry by priority:
Urgent – Needs your immediate attention! These are issues pertaining to major problems such as safety, cleanliness, accurate pricing, restrooms, working dispensers, lighting, and properly functioning equipment. These are the ones that must be placed as a priority to prevent further actions being implemented towards the store.
Somewhat Urgent – Needs attention but there is time to remedy. These issues are related to out of the ordinary or non-routine problems. Some of these findings are geared towards ‘what if’ scenarios like landscaping, courteous staff, credit card acceptor providing receipts, and overall appearance of both the interior and exterior of the store.
Moderate – Minor Issues that are overlooked. These areas include not documenting current processes, employees not trained on new best practices, failing to display legal documents such as OSHA or licenses, understocked shelves and inaccurate inventory counts.
Awareness Required – Just need to be known and corrected. These are things like simple errors in grammar and spelling, incorrect dates/times, chipped paint, improper signage, etc. This is just information that management should be aware of but doesn’t really pertain to the scope of the audit In today’s competitive retail environment auditing programs are in place to enhance and enforce what resonates most with your customers. Maximizing customer experience both in the store and at the pumps creates customer loyalty at your locations.
Clean Stores Sell More!