Merchandising Mindset

Published in CSP Daily News

Rutter’s excels getting stores ‘ready for business’: mystery shop

By  Angel Abcede, Senior Editor/Content Development Coordinator

YORK, Pa. -- Perfection for any retailer is that moment just before the store opens, or for a c-store operator, just before that 6 a.m. rush, when shelves are fully stocked, floors are clean and the store is ready for guests.

Being “ready for business” is a fundamental goal for Rutter’s Farm Stores, according to Jere Matthews, vice president of operations for the York, Pa.-based chain of 57 stores. Rutter’s came in a strong second overall in the expanded CSP-Service Intelligence Mystery Shop, conducted annually but this year including seven chains under 150 stores for the first time.

“We always want to be ready for business,” Matthews told CSP Daily News. “We’re making sure our coffee area, fountain and cooler areas are stocked and that we had product available. If you’re out of a product, you’re losing a sale and maybe making a customer unhappy.”

Rutter’s topped the other chains on questions about properly stocking single-served beverages, the fountain and coffee areas. While the chain ranked second overall, it stood its ground in the study that covered everything from store cleanliness to customer service.

“We have standards and expectations in place and hold people accountable,” Matthews said. “We know when we walk into the store, we should have all types of coffee available, all fountain flavors available. Maybe a certain store doesn’t sell all flavors, but the expectation is that they’re still in stock.”

Watch tomorrow’s CSP Daily News to find out the overall winner of the mystery shop study conducted by Ft. Hill, S.C.-based Service Intelligence. And read an examination of the results in the September issue of CSP magazine.

By Angel Abcede, Senior Editor/Content Development Coordinator
View More Articles By Angel Abcede