Selling: The Shop Floor Trading Intelligence
Shop name: NK Sports Location: Worle, Weston-Super-Mare Owners: Neil Keeling Website: www.nksports.co.uk
Date opened: April 2005 Affiliation: STAG Number of staff: 3 Specialty Sold: Football and football teamwear, bowls and schoolwear
1. Not a lot of people know that… NK Sports was born out of my passion for sport. After eight years of care work, working with children and adults with learning difficulties, I was offered the opportunity to purchase the company, which was then trading as CC Sports. I am pleased to say that despite my initial lack of industry knowledge after six years of trading I have increased turnover year-on-year and am now the only remaining independent traditional sports shop in the town.
2. How is the business finding current trading conditions?
Three years ago it was identified that the multiple sports stores were starting to impact on my sales as an independent traditional sports shop. On this basis it was decided that we should focus on specific areas of business and aim to secure further schoolwear contracts. The areas that we focus on are bowls, running and football, however the opening of a major multiple within two miles has impacted greatly on the latter, meaning we have streamlined the range. Over recent years we have introduced a Customer Loyalty Card scheme, which entitles the customer to five per cent off purchases and various other monthly offers. This has proved popular with all customers and provided NK Sports with an invaluable database of customers and their purchases, which in turn ensures our offers and promotions are of an interest to the customer.
3. What has been the greatest success for the business over the last 12 months? The last 12 months have been my most challenging since starting NK Sports, however we have secured three new school contracts which ensures customer footfall and an opportunity to up sell. We have also tapped into the popularity of social networking and have Youtube, Facebook and Twitter links from our website. On Youtube we post product video links and we update Facebook and Twitter daily and are beginning to see a steady increase in followers.
4. What recent supplier initiative has been successful for your business?
More suppliers are introducing an online stockists portal, meaning that I can check exactly what is available. This ensures customer enquiries on specific items can be answered instantly, allowing me to offer a better ordering service.
5. What will be your biggest challenge in the next 12 months?
Over the next 12 months I aim to continue and maintain growth. My biggest challenge is to compete with internet prices and the multiples; in order to do this we need to ensure we offer the customer excellent product knowledge as well as outstanding customer service.
Company: Pointfore UK Founded: 1991 Sport: Racquetball Key Equipment: Bats, balls Website:
“Racquetball is a game suited to almost everyone but is quite often favoured by those who find the game of squash too exerting but still want a really good workout on court. It also attracts the female players who enjoy squash but have not quite got the power/stamina to progress further and racquetball gives them this opening.
In our range we have all the relevant equipment for racquetball, such as rackets, grips, balls and strings, as well as a range of accessories such as sports bags, water bottles and headbands suitable for other racket sports.
Recently we introduced a new racquetball racket
featuring a long handle that is proving to be very popular and has created a lot of talk among players.
Our range also includes a limited clothing collection, with some outfits aimed at retailers who will supply ‘back-to-school’ clothing, such as jog pants, skorts and shorts.
Over the years we have built up an excellent brand
reputation, and retailers are able to buy from us good quality products at very favourable prices in our opinion. Our products are of good quality and value for money and we offer an
aftersales service that we reckon is second to none.”
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