Look at the purple line on this graph. It’s very sad to see as it represents the market share of independent grocery stores.

UK Grocery Industry in the last 40 years

But as the red line (Tesco) has reached a peak, lets hope that the purple one has reached a trough and can start climbing again.

As consumer trends change, businesses quickly adapt to meet these new demands. Tesco with it’s clubcard and now we’re seeing a steady rise of the no-frills supermarkets like Aldi and Lidl. But judging from this graph one sector has been left well behind. Too many independent businesses haven’t adapted their service to meet the new demands from consumers and I don’t understand why. Standing still is going backwards as other businesses overtake you.

 

Here are some things which I don’t understand about independent businesses.

  1. Not opening at convenient times. Even today I walked past a butcher’s shop in a market town which closed at 12.30pm on a Saturday. Why would any business do that?????? Can someone please explain to me as I have no idea. Because that’s the way it’s always been? Meanwhile Tesco was 200m away and open ’til 10pm. Now, I’m not saying that the butcher can match them completely but doing a half day on what should be their busiest day is beyond my comprehension.
  2. Not working together. To go back to the example above – there was a green grocer a few doors down from the butcher. They were open. But if the butcher is closed it affect the trade of their neighbours doesn’t it?? If a (potential) customer knows they can’t buy meat on a Saturday afternoon then they go somewhere else (the supermarket) and the greengrocer also loses out.
  3. Not adapting to modern trends. The internet is a very powerful tool. It gives everyone a voice. Whether that’s to advertise (very cheaply), express opinions or to sell online. Any business who doesn’t embrace technology is making a huge mistake.

 

Come on business owners!

  • Work together
  • Learn new skills
  • Fight back against soulless retail.

Your produce is far better than the big boys and people in your community will support you if you give them enough reason to.

Don’t let them beat you.

 

 

 

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