Forecourt Trader - 30 years at the heart of the fuel retailing community

Fuel sales up at Morrisons

Fuel sales at Morrisons are up 5.4%, according to its quarter three results, contributing to an overall sales increase of 14.9%.

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VAT cut will see retailer costs rise

The VAT and duty changes outlined in the Pre-Budget Report look set to cause a retailer hangover that will last well into the New Year.

Give and take

With well-known high street names collapsing like a pack of cards at what should be their busiest time of year - and as we're still suffering the after-shocks of the failure of the big banking institutions -it's anyone's guess where it will all end. But certainly by all accounts the Government's pre-budget announcements have not done anything to reassure the nation. They have been likened to 'moving the deckchairs on the Titanic'. In other words, whichever way you look at it, we still seem to be sinking. If everyone had a job and a huge pay rise maybe things would be different. But why would anyone suddenly go out on a spending spree just to save a few pence here and there, when they haven't actually got any money, and anyway they've already been spending money they haven't got - and that's the big problem. In terms of fuel it's literally a case of giving with one hand and taking away with the other - with loads of bother for the retailer in between. Some comfort for the petrol retailing business though is that people do NEED food and fuel - it's not a case of WANT. I don't know anyone who 'wants' to go onto a forecourt to buy fuel, but they have to (especially if they want to get to work, to earn money, to spend it, to save 2.5% on the VAT!). That makes them a captive audience and gives retailers the opportunity to win them over with a good service.

Five-star sites

Tates Spar Battlefield, Shropshire, opened 18 months ago and is Tates' flagship site. It recently got a new store manager, Sharon Stanley, who took over from David Hammond after he was promoted internally.

the x-tra factor

== Site with a licence to sell alcohol ==

Altered images

When it comes to running a car wash in the Noughties, it's all about image.

Hop to it

Last Easter was not the best one for retailers and that's because it came really early. Consequently sales were down. However the good news for next Easter is that it's three weeks later with Easter Sunday on April 12. So that gives you 21 extra days to sell chocolate eggs. And despite the credit crunch with consumers watching what they spend, chocolate is a treat that will still be affordable for most people. And it seems that even those watching their waistlines throw caution to the wind at Easter time. Indeed new research commissioned by Mars has found that Easter is the most permissible time of year for eating chocolate.

Skin deep

Within your convenience store, health and beauty items probably fall way down your list of priorities. After all they're not a daily purchase or even a major footfall driver. However they do matter if you want your store to be a one-stop shop. Yes, serious shoppers will go to Boots or Superdrug and most other people will get their regular supplies from the supermarkets, but there will always be distress purchase occasions when the shaving foam or shampoo has run out.

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Weekly retail fuel prices: 23 March 2020
RegionDieselLPGSuper ULUL
East Midlands123.11133.47120.13
North East121.10133.70118.76
North West121.7164.40131.91118.92
Northern Ireland118.34126.40116.15
South East124.2564.90135.17121.48
South West122.8655.90131.66119.83
West Midlands122.86134.51120.07
Yorkshire & Humber122.1363.90133.53119.07

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