Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

Learning to let go of stock that is not working in your newsagency

Mark Fletcher
April 18th, 2014 · 2 Comments

How long do you take to quit products that are not working in your newsagency?  A few days? A week? A month? Six months? A year?

If a product is not working every additional day it is on the shop floor or in the store room is additional cost to the business. As this cost increases the value of immediately quitting the products increases. hence the need to quit non-performing stock quickly.

In my newsagency earlier this week we decided to give away for free and or bin two small display units of products that are no longer working. It was not a lot of stock, not even filling two dump bins. Under $100 at cost.

Just having the stock on the shop floor gave off a message I did not like. Hence the decision to quit.

When we decide to exit a product we like it to be done within seven to fourteen days. We usually start at 50% off. After a week days we move to a price, often in a $1 bin and or a $5 bin as appropriate. What is left at the end of two weeks we remove by either giving it away or throwing it away.

It is important we are ruthless in quitting non-performing stock. Important to keep our businesses looking fresh, important to embrace the consequences of bad buying and important to have offers for customers that show they can get deals from us.

I accept responsibility for product I have bought which has not worked. While I’ll ale a write-down deal from a spiller if available, I will not pressure a supplier into giving one that was not part of the buy-in.

Too often newsagents expect suppliers to be responsible for newsagent buying decisions.

If we buy the stock for our stores we must responsible for dealing with it if it does not work as expected.

All products likes come to an end. This is why it is important to have an established process for handling and quitting products that are no longer working as we need them to..


Category: Newsagency challenges · Newsagency management · Newsagency opportunities

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Cris // Apr 19, 2014 at 9:27 PM

    Mark, whilst I agree with your comments, I feel that many suppliers are just keen to make the sale, its amazing how well everything sells when they are peddling their wares, but they should have the whatever to stand behind their sometimes wild promises as to a products potential. A little more honesty in the start will quite often avoid disappointment 90 days later. I seek to build relationships with those suppliers who prove their worth by listening to business and providing me with opportunity, while we don’t get it right all the time, if we dont try new things we will never grow or adapt. The hard bit is identifying the good suppliers who are trustworthy.


  • 2 Mark Fletcher // Apr 20, 2014 at 8:21 AM

    Cris we are the buyers, it’s our decision. If someone says it’s selling well, ask where, ask for contact details, ask for proof.

    Newsagents sometimes take the sale or return offer as proof when it is not.

    Believe what you can prove and not just because you want to believe it. There is a lot of spin in our channel.


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