The new One Stop Franchise store in Bridgend welcomed nearly 200 people on the first day. All were keen to see the new store and meet local celebrity Wynne Evans, the Welsh tenor and star of BBC Radio Wales and the Go Compare adverts!
The new store has breathed life into a housing estate, on the site of a former labour club. Taranjit Dhillon, franchise operations controller at One Stop explains: “This was a cold start store and was one of the best I’ve ever seen. Customers filled the aisles and there were queues all day with people”
One Stop provides each of their franchisees with a marketing tool kit which helps them to create awareness within their local community. The stores then add in their own distinct touch to really drive awareness of what is on offer, focusing on what is important to the local and wider community.
New franchisee, Paul Thomas explains: “We opened on St David’s Day so we had local Welsh food, inflatable daffodils and Welsh flags. With Wales heading for the Grand Slam it gave the store a sense of identity which is valuable to this community, who are passionate about their heritage. It was great to have Wynne Evans officially opening the store and give the day a little something extra!”
Supporting the community is a key element for Paul and his new team – who he recruited from the local area. Across the opening weekend, customers helped One Stop Bridgend raise over £300 for the local initiative, Sandville Self Help Centre. The centre helps terminally ill people with reiki, massage and therapies to aid relaxation and provide respite.
Alongside working with local knowledge, One Stop can use their national expertise in the retail industry to help bring fresh input to an area.
Paul says, “The feedback we’re getting from customers is they’re absolutely delighted with the store, with its new fresh look and amazing range they’re incredibly pleased we’re now in their area.”
Getting the right products into store is paramount but also preparing new staff is key. Taranjit explains: “Paul completed a training course in another franchise store for a week. After that, staff were involved in training in the same location, as we didn’t want anyone to walk into the new store on opening day without great customer service.”
Paul continues: “I’ve been both impressed and surprised with the level of support we’ve received along the way, as there’s always someone to help and that’s enabled us to get up to speed quickly. We’re already feeling part of the community and are now looking forward to moving ahead with the processes and promotions.”