The Importance of General Merchandise

No longer can a retailer be defined as just a food store, mass merchant or convenience store.

As the lines of retail continue to blur, the convenience channel has the opportunity to capture atypical sales opportunities by offering general merchandise products, as well as gift and novelty type items.

We see huge untapped potential in the General Merchandise/Gift Novelty category. You may not be used to carrying items in this category, but it is not too late to start.

Novelty Items

The General Merchandise industry makes up $212.5 billion dollars in total all outlet sales. Convenience stores show a growth advantage over food, drug and mass-merchandise retailers when it comes to general merchandise.

According to data and analysis provided to Convenience Store News by Nielsen at the end of 2015, dollar sales were up 3% in the GM category for c-stores, compared to only 1.1& for food, drug and massmerchandise
(52 weeks, ending Aug. 29, 2015).

Subcategory and time of year also make a difference in the sales successes:
• Cell accessories were up 16% in dollars and 43% in units year-over-year
• Smoking accessories see spikes in March and July, with jumps as high as 5% over the previous month,
generaand declines in November and February, down as much as 2.3%
• Seasonal goods see the largest increases in November and January, and the largest decreases in April

The General Merchandise category has many advantages over other categories:
• High profit dollar and profit margin category; average margin 35-45pts. in the c-store channel
• Example; you may need to sell 30 candy bars to make up the profit you would earn selling one flashlight, in a lot less space
• General Merchandise increases your average register ring as well as your market basket
• High volume category
• Very high impulse; earning you a sale you would not have otherwise made
• No expiration dates
• Sets you apart from the competition by offering your customer something new and exciting

The Keys to Being Successful in General Merchandise:
• Product assortment is key
• Be an early adopter; for trend driven items you need to ride the “trend wave” with promotion
• Keep offering fresh and up-to-date but stock core items on an everyday basis
• Place the items in high traffic areas as they are impulse driven; on the counter or path to purchase is best


For More Information Contact Your Sales Rep or Call 800-992-0592