We recently talked about running successful promotions in your convenience stores and how a successful promotion stems from a good sales analysis. We know there are infinite benefits for your store when you analyze your sales data, so here are some reasons why good sales analysis tools are critical to your convenience stores' success.
You Have the Power- Each report in DataMax's back office software is user-definable. That means each sales report and analysis can be customized by you--chosen for a specific store, on a specific date, at a specific time, and more. User-definable reporting also means you can pick and choose exactly which item sales and other numbers you want to measure. For one store owner, he might want monitor an increase in coffee sales and capitalize on that to profit more. Another might have a goal to increase health food sales and use analysis tool to measure his progress. Basically, you have the power to define the KPI’s YOU are interested in, and a good back office system will easily cater to it.
Make Informed Decisions- Analyzing your sales over several weeks, months, or years enables you to identify and establish specific sales patterns for your stores. You will have historical data in your arsenal to help you predict patterns that might occur in your store in the future. A back office software with a good sales analysis tool will also help you identify where your strengths lie within your product or service range. What is your target market buying the most of from your convenience stores? What products are you trying to sell that never seem to move? What products consistently have the best and worst margins over time? In other words, it will point out clearly which are the popular products, and which are not; which months have more demand for specific items, what vendor has best cost, and much more . By using analysis tools to identify these patterns, you won’t continue to stock your store with unpopular, over priced, slow selling, low margin, or dead stock in the future. You can make decisions that will better your store based on relevant facts and figures.
Stay Competitive- A good sales analysis tool in your back office software should also allow you to compare your stores' sales performance with your market as a whole. Your “market” means your “competitors”. Beating the competition involves comparing your sales to the rest of the market. You can do this by simply comparing category sales via the NACS standard categories. However, you should look deeper into the data-- have a look at actual item sales. It is a very useful way to gauge where you are among your competitors and make the appropriate changes to succeed. If a competitor is selling Monster Energy Drinks at a lesser price than you offer, and that is a key item for your store, you need to adjust. A good analysis tool will highlight this scenario for you. Building on the last promotion blog a bit -- after the analysis tools highlight this scenario, you can then devise a promotion to draw customers back and get them back into your store.
These three things are just a tiny portion of what is required to be successful in today's competitive retail environment, but none can be accomplished without good sales analysis tools. So, be certain your BOS has good analysis tools that allow you to address the issues we noted here. If you do not address them, you can be sure your competitor will.