Over the course of the term I have learned many things in the Retail Management class. We focused on the 4 P’s, people/staffing, customers and their behaviors, operations, and the financial aspects of operating a retail store. The decisions I made for every one of these situations impacted the weekly revenue of my simulated store.
I first had to select a location to place my grocery store. I had to take in consideration of what kind of neighborhood the building was in and the cost of rent. Picking a store that was not by any other building would not have been a good idea since that would mean there would not be a lot of car traffic. I also could not have picked the busiest place in the city because the cost of rent would have been too much. Along with the location I had to figure out what place would have been best for a billboard advertisement. Putting a billboard on a smaller building in a busier area seemed to work just fine. Other promotions that I ran were email promotions and radio advertisements. With the radio, I had to figure out what station my target audience listened to the most and that is how I picked the proper station to advertise on.
I decided to sell all the necessary products along with a few impulse products. The impulse products that I decided on were gas grills and portable grills. I eventually got rid of the gas grills because the portable grills sound more often. Most grocery stores have a 20-40% markup on all their product. I decided to go a 30% mark-up on all items. I learned that some items are more price sensitive than others so I had to adjust on certain products to lower the price so that more sales would take place.
Along with operating a store, you need to have the proper amount of staff available to make the shopping experience enjoyable for your customer. The way I staffed was to make sure my store was prepared for the busier times of the day. The mornings and midafternoon I had half the number of workers than in the evenings after most people are done with work.
A major aspect of running and managing a store is to make sure the store is making money instead of losing it. You have to make sure that your costs of all expenses are less than the monthly revenue. If your revenue is not larger than your expenses, you have to work the numbers and look how to cut back on the fixed costs of your business. No business can survive by not making money so that is why I think this aspect is the most important. One way to make sure you can capitalize your sales is by putting the best-selling products in the back of the store. By doing this, the customer will walk through your whole store and this may lead them to buy things that they did not have intent on purchasing once they first entered the store.
Overall, I think this simulation was very useful and very informative. As a manager of a retail store, I can confidently say that this simulation covers all the responsibilities that I am required to do in my every day duties. For anyone looking to be in charge of some sort of retail store, I would strongly recommend to take the time to do this simulation so you can know what to expect.