Australian Newsagency Blog

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

Entries from December 2010

2010, the year that was

December 31st, 2010 · 4 Comments

What a challenging, memorable and terrific year. I have enjoyed 2010. I like that tablet computers and other disruptive devices are making their moves.  I feel like sending an I Told You So card to some people. I like that newsagents are starting to realise that their future is in their own hands. I like […]

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Tags: Newsagency opportunities

New Year’s Resolutions

December 31st, 2010 · 14 Comments

Here’s a grab bag of resolutions for 2011 newsagents could consider. Reconfigure the floor space allocation of your newsagency to reflect your plans for the future. We drive serious debate about the green challenges of the magazine supply model. To act on what you think needs work with the traditional newsagency model. To get serious […]

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Tags: Newsagency opportunities

Why aren’t we using women to design newsagencies?

December 31st, 2010 · No Comments

More women shop in newsagencies than men yet our businesses, which depend on women for survival, are designed by men. Why is it that we do not have women designing newsagencies?  If we did, what changes could we expect to see in newsagency layout and the overall experience provided by the shop fit? Too often, […]

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Tags: retail

Henderson Greetings drops the ball

December 31st, 2010 · 11 Comments

25% of our card space at one of my stores is allocated to Henderson Greetings. They dropped the ball when we temporarily relocated due to construction and have never caught up.  They have missed sales as a result.   For the first year, Henderson was an attentive and engaged supplier.  That changed around six months ago […]

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Tags: Greeting Cards

Press reader app could hurt foreign newspaper sales

December 31st, 2010 · No Comments

Check out this video showing off Press Reader on the iPad – an app providing access to more than 1,700 newspapers from anywhere in the world. With foreign language newspaper sales so strong, local access to this app could slow the growth. 0 likes

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Tags: Media disruption

Is it a policy to greet customers in your newsagency?

December 30th, 2010 · 14 Comments

The most common complaint newsagents make about anything, and I do mean anything, is that they (we) are too busy. It is an excuse trotted out if we miss a notice or an email from a supplier, are late in paying a bill or have been discovered not running our business as well as it […]

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Tags: Newsagency management · Newsagency opportunities

XchangeIT needs to realise that newsagencies are open this week

December 30th, 2010 · 2 Comments

If XchangeIT was serious about providing good customer service to newsagents who are forced to use it, it would be open and providing assistance this week. Their security device requires access to a key when XchangeIT is installed on a computer,  A computer trashed by flood, fire or a major hardware crash will require re-installation.  […]

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Tags: Customer Service · Newsagency challenges

Ladies and diaries

December 30th, 2010 · No Comments

It never ceases to amaze me how sales come in waves.  This week it has been pocket diaries.  Excellent sales.  Especially of this Letts range.  Our customers (women 40 and over) love them.  The post Christmas sale is pulling new people into the store and they are buying other items, like these diaries.  Of course, […]

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Tags: Diaries

Editorial choices harm newspapers more than new devices

December 29th, 2010 · 16 Comments

Bloggers and online commentators have been doing the heavy lifting on the St Kilda and AFL footballer scandal.  While The Age, the Herald Sun and TV and radio news outlets have  taken a back seat with this story, Derryn Hinch, Mike Stuchbery and Phil Quin and been providing the level of commentary and assessment a […]

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Tags: Newspapers

Can’t give away a cricket calendar

December 29th, 2010 · No Comments

Australians are savage when national teams fail.  One only has to look at how the nation has turned on the Australian cricket team this week to see this in action.  The comments across the counter are blunt, everyone has an opinion it seems. Fair enough given that many of us define ourselves as a nation […]

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Tags: Calendars

Are you open New Years Day?

December 29th, 2010 · 26 Comments

The centres in which my stores are located are usually closed New Years Day.  This year, a couple are open for optional trading.  I haven’t yet made a decision about whether to open and would be interested in feedback from others. 0 likes

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Tags: Newsagency opportunities

Interactive Hammer magazine

December 29th, 2010 · 2 Comments

The latest issue of Hammer music magazine is interactive, playing sound when the cover is opened.  It’s a nice touch and likely to appeal to the target reader.  Given the continuing (market leading) strong sales in Hallmark interactive sound cards, I am surprised more magazine publishers have not embraced this technology to lift sales. 0 […]

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Tags: magazines

Is Myki for the chop?

December 28th, 2010 · 6 Comments

The Herald Sun is reporting today that the new Victorian State Government is set to scrap the Myki ticketing system.  Myki is a dog of a system.  The previous government allowed it to provide 7-Eleven with an advantage over newsagents by agreeing to integration with their in-house systems.  This was promised for newsagents, after my […]

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Tags: Newsagency challenges

Very different sales mix during post Christmas sales

December 28th, 2010 · No Comments

We have been running very different newsagencies these past two days.  As the sales graph shows, most of our business have been greeting cards.  To give some perspective, we still did close to $500 in calendars in this store from which I extracted the graph.  95% of the card sales are boxed Christmas cards which […]

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Tags: Newsagency management

Cool magazine packaging

December 28th, 2010 · 3 Comments

The latest issue of Jewellery magazine, out yesterday, comes in a clear strong plastic bag – promoted as a beach bag.  While I am not sure of the appeal of the bag to readers of the magazine, I like the creativity of the packaging.  While it is a challenge to fit in a magazine pocket, […]

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Tags: magazines

Drowning in NW magazine

December 28th, 2010 · No Comments

We continue to be oversupplied with NW magazine from ACP.  Based on current supply, we are lucky to achieve a sell through of 30%.  This is odd for a weekly title from ACP, they control supply tightly as a rule.  Given the space allocation, we need a sell through rate of 60% and above for […]

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Tags: magazine distribution

Terrific Boxing Day

December 27th, 2010 · 7 Comments

We had a terrific day of trade yesterday for the start of the Boxing Day Sales.  Christmas products were the hit – Boxed and single cards and Christmas decorations sold like hot cakes.  Much of the product sold had been sourced especially for the event – our margin was excellent.  $3,000 in boxed cards alone […]

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Tags: Newsagency opportunities

Wanting more from iPad magazine apps

December 27th, 2010 · 2 Comments

In a smart move, Virgin is providing free access between Christmas and the New Year to the launch issue if Project, their digital only magazine available through the iPad.  I grabbed my copy yesterday.  It’s pretty cool – making good use of video and some clever navigation techniques as is de rigueur for iPad magazines.  […]

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Tags: Media disruption

The Sun and The Times newspapers publish iPad editions on Christmas Day

December 27th, 2010 · No Comments

For 41 years, the The Sun newspaper, from News Corp., in the UK has respected an agreement between UK publishers and not published on Christmas Day.  This year that changed when they published an iPad only Christmas day edition.  The Times, also from News, published an iPad edition on Christmas Day. 0 likes

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Tags: Media disruption · Newspapers

Bring on the Boxing Day Sale

December 26th, 2010 · No Comments

Christmas is over for many newsagents, especially those in shopping centers.  Our stores at Forest Hill, Knox City, Frankston and Watergardens kick off BOXING DAY SALES first thing this morning.  All Christmas stock is half price as are all calendars plus a range of items we have sourced specifically for the sale.  We have A1 […]

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Tags: Newsagency opportunities · retail

Christmas greetings

December 24th, 2010 · 10 Comments

Merry Christmas to one and all who pass by this place.  Have a great day with family and friends.  For those opening for Boxing Day Sale business, enjoy your one day off. 0 likes

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Tags: Uncategorized

Taking back the farm with toys

December 24th, 2010 · 5 Comments

Australian newsagencies used always have a toy department decades ago.  Over the years we lost the market to the majors.  We forgot how to compete.  Some of us  are taking back the farm and enjoying good success with toys.  At Christmas especially. In one of my stores we have brought in a pallet load of […]

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Tags: Newsagency opportunities

Quirky bands selling well

December 24th, 2010 · No Comments

We have sourced a better range of bands than magazine distributor Network Services sent newsagents last week.  The range is broader, better priced, better packaged and offers a better margin.  The look stunning on slatwall.  The range is bigger than in the photo. The supplier of the bands sent by Network ought never have been […]

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Tags: Gifts · Newsagency opportunities

Promoting the Australiam Women’s Weekly

December 24th, 2010 · No Comments

We are promoting The Australian Women’s Weekly in our prime women’s magazine section as well as next to our newspapers this week. This newspaper location is working a treat for us – generating good sales from a simple and tactical display. While this space is premium, AWW is earning its keep.  It’s great to see […]

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Tags: Uncategorized

iPad update and subscription deals for The Australian

December 24th, 2010 · No Comments

To coincide with the launch of a new release of the iPad app for The Australian, News Limited has released details of a new subscription offer.  $6.17 a month is a good deal if the new app has worthwhile improvements.  The offer was communicated by News to current and past subscribers two days ago.  The […]

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Tags: Media disruption · Newspapers