Pens and markers account for 33% or more of all stationery sold in a typical newsagency yet we do little to support such a hero category. Newsagents usually leave pens placed on a wall, in a permanent fixture, often away from the main traffic thoroughfare – almost like they are not important when in fact they are vital to the health of our stationery department.
We need to do better than this. The solid contribution pens and markers make is an excellent base off of which to drive growth. But it takes a commitment of space, time and inventory investment.
The photo shows what confronts shoppers at the entrance to an Officeworks store I visited this week. There is no mistaking their commitment to pens.
While we complain (me included) about Officeworks and their ethically questionable price based advertising, on their shop floor they pitch everyday stationery like pens and markets well.
We need to do better if we are to convince shoppers that we are destination shops in this category.