newsXpress helps local newsagents with advice on pop-up retail

newsXpress helps local newsagents to run more engaged, interesting and fun retail businesses. We do this in many ways, helping local newsagents to discover the new and exciting.

When it comes to pop-up retail, we have plenty advice for newsagents including:

LOCATION.

With a pop-up shop you don’t have time to find your customers. The location needs to already have good traffic passing daily, traffic you can easily leverage. Even more so than in fixed-location retail, location is critical.

The best locations are shops that have good passing traffic that is of interest to you and that have been vacant for a while where a landlord might be happy with something rather than nothing.

OCCUPANCY COST.

Negotiate the lowest rent cost possible. Some landlords see pop-up offers as a reason to charge a premium. Only sign up for a price you are 100% happy with. If it is expensive and does not work financially, don’t sign hoping it works out, because in retail it rarely does work out better. In a pop-up business you have less time to see if it works out. Also, preferably, no contingency deposit.

LABOUR COST.

Staff the business with a lean roster. This shop is about selling. that means, products placed for a price proposition rather than beautiful displays that take time to maintain. Every staff member is there to sell and maximise revenue from every shopper visit. There is no room in the roster for fat.

FIXTURES AND FITTINGS.

Don’t spend a cent on fixtures and fittings. That needs to be your starting position. It’s a pop-up shop. People expect it to be  efficient, cost-effective. Using tables and boxes adds to the feel of the shop feeling low-cost and that can help drive sales. Suppliers can be a good source for loaned fixtures.

INVENTORY.

Ask suppliers to offer consignment stock or special clearance deals they’d like to move fast. Go for items that can be sold out of a box, to make display and ranging easier. In-box displays of particularly cheap items can work very well.

PRICING MODEL.

Price to sell. This means being below usual retail. Price to understandable price points. For example, you might have a $10 table, a $20 table and so on. Consider bundling items into packs, which make price comparison difficult.

PROMOTION.

Don’t spend money on sign writing or marketing. Use social media and bargain websites and anywhere similar where you can list the store and its products.

Host an opening party. List this as a local event on Facebook.

MANAGEMENT MINDSET.

Your mindset in managing the pop-up shop needs to be different to a fixed-location retail situation. Pop-up shops are about low cost, low overheads, low prices. Be ready to do deals. Those working in the pop-up shop needs to be different to how they would be in the fixed-location retail business.

SPEED.

You need to move fast. From the moment you sign a lease or agreement, the clock is ticking. Ideally, you’d open within 24 hours and when you are done, closing and clearing out the shop is done in 24 hours or less. This is all about maximising the time for income-production.

Newsagents are ideal retailers to create and run local pop-up shops.

newsXpress is grateful to support local newsagents to be smart, engaged and fun local retailers.

How newsXpress helped local newsagent businesses through Covid

newsXpress has helped many local newsagent businesses through Covid in many different ways. This help has ranged from the practical to the financial to the emotional.

Our mission is to help local newsagent businesses be more relevant to their community, more enjoyable to those working there and more valuable to those who own the business.

Most newsXpress newsagent shops are in regional Australia or suburban high street situations. Many are in small towns.

Here is some of what we have done with and for newsXpress newsagent members:

Early access to state and territory grants. Even where they did not quality for JobKeeper we helped plenty make the case for grant funding.

Rent relief. We have helped many newsXpress members with rent relief, which has ranged from 25% off rent for 6 months to 75% off rent for 6 months.

Bonus GP%. On top of newsXpress preferential pricing, 51 suppliers provided an additional 5% of GP April through June on all purchases in an exclusive

First with jigsaws. In February we pitched jigsaws as a growth category in a Covid world. Our members grabbed inventory, and achieved excellent sales.

Online with jigsaws. In March we turned on a national jigsaw website connected to newsXpress stores to win delivery and click and collect sales. It’s been a hit.

First with nesting. In March we identified nesting as a popular growth category. Members following our advice have added thousands of dollars in revenue.

New suppliers. We have brought on 15 new suppliers in recent months, almost all of whom have not previously dealt with newsagents.

Half price website development. With Tower Systems we’ve delivered beautiful POS software linked Shopify sites for individual stores for half price.

Daily email. Sent each morning, by 7am with updated supplier deals, to-do tips for staff and more. Designed for a fast, time-efficient, read.

Mask access. Months ago, we provided access to masks for sale. Today, we have 12 suppliers with handmade through to funky and fun masks.

Subsidised online sales. We launched subsidised shipping for online Beanie Boo sales for our website connected to 100+ local newsXpress stores. This site delivers hundreds of thousands of dollars across participating newsXpress stores annually.

Click and collect. From March we offered practical advice and guidance on how to do click and collect, to win new business. It’s been a hit.

Daily Zoom meetings. These started March 15 and have run Monday – Friday ever since. The sessions are filmed and 75+ members watch the videos daily. In the sessions we meet suppliers, stay on top of news, motivate each other and more.

Sunday drinks. Every Sunday @ 4pm. This is a more relaxed chat.

Engaging social media campaigns. Four months ago, we launched Storytime, daily social media targeted stories that provide an emotional narrative members can use on social media. They are a daily hit driving excellent feedback and engagement.

This list is not complete, we help and support local newsXpress newsagent businesses in many other ways.

Why shop for back to school from your local newsagency?

When shopping for back to school supplies for this year, please consider shopping at your local newsagency. Local newsagents live and serve the local community, they are connected, often helping local community groups.

Buying back to school products from your local newsagent is a wonderful way of supporting the local community and the groups that support it.

We urge parents, schools and others … if you are shopping for back to school stationery items this year, please shop thoughtfully, shop for back to school at your local newsagent.

Here are our back to school shopping tips:

Shop locally, from your local newsagency, in your community.

Support the local businesses local community groups are likely to call on.

If you have a choice, choose locally made items.

Buy what you need, don’t be tricked by a volume price deal that may see you buy items you will later waste.

See price guarantees for what they are – lazy marketing from businesses that don’t put in the hard work.

Quality is more important than price.

A price difference may not be what it seems. It could be due to lesser quality, or the supplier not supporting your community groups or the supplier sourcing products made in a cheap labour country, which does not help local Aussie jobs.

Newsagents are usually in the first businesses to be asked by community groups and schools for donations. It is unreasonable to do this unless you help them win business. This is just one reason your shopping local for back to school products matters.

Beware claims of big savings. One major stationery business is currently claiming that parents are saving on average more than 25% by shopping with them. This is a business that makes genuine price comparison difficult because of the volume of house brand product. I know of several newsagents who have price checked for local families and found the difference to be less than 5%.

Back to school is, for sure, an expensive time for families. Saving money is appealing. However, it is critical to be sure that the savings are real and that money you are spending benefits the economy on which you rely.

A small higher price could be for better quality product, local community group support, school support or for supporting local jobs, thereby putting money in the local economy, which helps fund, maybe local jobs on which school parents themselves rely.

Yes, the economy is that circular.

newsXpress helps local newsagents grow interesting and diverse businesses that are usually not your traditional newsagency. Come check us out, look for the brand.

Why shop at your local newsagency?

Your local newsagency will be a family owned and run business. It is likely to be community connected and supporting, community engaged.

Your local newsagency will offer a bigger range of greeting cards, magazines and newspapers than any other retailer around.

Plus, they will most likely have awesome gifts from which you can choose. as well as gifts, you are likely to find plenty of Australian made products like candles, soap and more. Australian made matters to local Aussie newsagents and they thoughtfully and carefully seek out local Aussie makers to offer their products in local communities.

Sure there are some local newsagency businesses that have not evolved.It’s okay. You can lead a horse to water … However, many have. Indeed, many have evolved so much that they do not look and feel like a newsagency, which is great to see.

Shopping at your local newsagency is good for the community and good for you as the service will be personal, engaging and memorable.

Some people think the Australian newsagency is a thing of the past. They are wrong. The Australian newsagency has evolved;ved into something wonderful, engaging, relevant and fun for 2021. Come visit and see for yourself. It will most likely nothing like you remember from all those years ago.

If you want to support your local community, support your local newsagency. And, if they don’t have what you need, ask if they can get it for you. Your local newsagency is a wonderful gift, game, toy and card emporium, making shopping easy and engaging.

If you want to connect with someone, express yourself to them, give a gift, send a hug or more, your local Aussie newsagency is a good place to start, a good place to explore as they are likely to offer products you will not see elsewhere.

All through Covid your local newsagency has been open and offering access sot safe and engaging retail, serving the local community and bringing to life wonderful self-care and gift giving opportunities.

newsXpress is grateful to help local Aussie newsagencies to transition from the traditional to the fresh and new, the existing and fun.

2021 is a new era for the local Aussie newsagency, come check us out.

It feels like we are all holding our breath

It feels like we are all holding our breath, wondering if 2021 will repeat 2020, as we wait to hear the numbers of the day.

The number will be what they are. What we do know is that we can do out bit to stop them growing. That’s why we are cleaning, sanitising and wearing masks … for you, and for us.

The rapid closing of borders was a surprise, yet understandable. However, it feeds into anxiety some feel.

We will do everything possible to provide for you a safe and happy place to shop, so 2021 is more like you hoped.

We are optimistic. Living in Victoria, we have been here before. We know what Victorians can do, what all Australians can do. It’s simple really … wear a mask, wash your hands, keep your distance, discover some delicious new recipes, enjoy jigsaws and talk more on the phone.

Together, we can show this shadow of 2020 that it’s not welcome in 2021.