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I can’t sell gifts in my newsagency, I have a gift shop nearby, it wouldn’t be fair to them

A newsagent said this to me a couple of days ago. It’s something I heard 20 years ago, not that much today.

The gift shop near then is a small shop with a narrow focus. They carry less than .5% of all available gifts in Australia.

It’s an out of date view for a newsagent to say they can’t stock gifts because they have a gift shop nearby.

Think about your newsagency for a moment. You have competitors for every category. Your exclusivity in circulation products and lotteries was ripped from you. It’s not your job to protect another shop nearby.

Then, think about online. That gift shop nearby is being competed with by thousands of online businesses, many of which are delivering to your town.

What newsagents owe is a commitment to their business for all those supported by the business.

My advice to the newsagent is to put irrational emotion aside and explore gifts in a way that is not in direct competiton with the nearby gift shop.

  • Offer different categories. There are many categories a nearby competitor will not have covered.
  • Source from difference suppliers.
  • Display differently.
  • Differentiate as to the how: your customer service, add-on offerings.
  • Be up front with them about your plans.

A newsagency without gifts is likely a newsagency sliding toward closure. Gifts are essential. Typically, today in 2024, gift revenue can easily be 5 and more times your card revenue. It takes time and commitment, you can get there.

Use your gift engagement to differentiate your business. Leverage your current shopper profile. Indeed, your card and magazine data provide the best starting point to understand the gift opportunity in the business. That’s where I start when working with a newsagency making this move.

If you’re put off by a big business competitor in the gift space, don’t be. They do their thing, you can be different in a way that locals appreciate and give you money for.

I get that you want to get on with local shops. You can expand into areas they cover by being different. You have to put the needs of your business first. Survival of the fittest and all that!

Newsagency management

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