For many convenience retailers, alcohol is already one of the most important, if not the most important, categories within the store.

But it's not always easy to get right. There are a huge number of product lines across a large number of sub-categories, and the consumer and market dynamics are changing all the time. Plus, of course, there's the fact that the major supermarkets use deep price cuts in the category to drive shoppers to their stores, which makes it more difficult to construct a credible customer offer in a small space.

However, the market is still rich with opportunity. Consumers are spending fewer nights out at pubs and restaurants and increasingly looking to entertain at home instead; off licence specialists such as Thresher are disappearing from our high streets; shopper confidence is returning; and there's a World Cup to enjoy this summer.

So in order to help you take advantage of these favourable conditions, Convenience Store is teaming up with some of the UK's biggest and best suppliers to present you with all the information you need to make your alcohol fixture a success.

In every issue between now and the end of the year, we will be providing you with exclusive insight, special features and positive case studies across the entire spectrum of alcohol retailing, from refining your offer in established categories such as beer, capitalising on up-and-coming sectors such as pre-mix spirits, de-mystifying wine and unlocking the potential of take-home spirits. We'll also be looking at issues such as display innovation, set pieces such as Christmas and the World Cup, and offering advice on how to be a responsible retailer in your community.

Our focus will be on identifying business-building opportunities and identifying easily-achievable improvements. We won't be suggesting you should rip out your entire fixture, but rather point you in the direction of the right balance of products and techniques to make your sales and your store achieve their full potential.

So watch this space for our exciting project that will keep you up to date and informed all the way through to Christmas.

Competition is tough and supermarket pricing is always difficult to fight against, but with the right range and strategy you can take advantage of the consumer dynamics that are still in your favour. We're here to help you: make sure 2010 is your year of good cheer.
Bring on the experts
In order to provide you with the best possible insight into the market, we will be working with major suppliers at key times of the year. We are delighted to announce that Diageo has confirmed its support of our project, and will be helping you to make the most of the exciting spirits and pre-mixed categories during the course of the year.