Surrounded by countryside, the store’s location in the market town of Faversham means that there’s plenty of demand for deliveries, both from local customers and those further afield who don’t have the luxury of a local shop. 

“Some of these villages are further away, so they don’t have any stores to service them locally at all,” explains owner Sandeep Bains. “So we do get a reasonable amount of orders coming through from a little bit further away.”

In partnership with Snappy Shopper, Welcome Faversham delivers within a 3.5 mile radius, with customers within 2.5 miles incurring a £3.75 delivery charge, and those beyond charged £4.50.

However, he has had to be careful not to overstretch his team and has had to reign in the delivery area in order to ensure it remains profitable. “We’ve actually had to bring the area in because some were just so far away that by the time the driver got there and back, we’d have four or five orders locally that we’re now kind of falling into, not late but later than we’d like to deliver them. So we cut the area back a little bit just so we can focus on making sure our service is exactly where it should be.”

With a dedicated team of three drivers on the store’s payroll, the business has achieved an average delivery time of 30 minutes, with an order fulfilment rate of 97.5 percent.

It’s this level of detail and discipline that has enabled the service to be so successful. When Sandeep first started with Snappy back in 2020, they told him that the average basket spend was around £17-18, which he says was “good for us”. 

However, he has now far exceeded this, by homing in on customers needs. “Because we’ve got a good range, you’ll see people doing £150 shops,” he says. “I think our highest is £230 pounds! And that’s not cigarettes and tobacco or alcohol, that’s a mix.”

Over the past year alone, Sandeep’s strategic efforts have driven the average delivery spend from £25 to £29.

He claims that the rise in delivery sales has elevated the store much more quickly than he anticipated and he has big plans for future growth following a major refit.

“A huge focus for us with the refit is integrating our EPOS with Snappy Shopper, so that our customers can see what’s at the store [in real time].” 

The integration also means delivery shoppers have access to promotions.

“So as soon as it [a new promotion] comes down from head office, it will hit our back office and then go straight to Snappy and straight to our [electronic] shelf edge labels at the same time,” explains Sandeep. “Any out-of-stocks will mean that, efficiency-wise in terms of picking times, we don’t have to pick up the phone and call customers because they’ll already know it’s out of stock. It will require discipline from us to ensure that our gap checks are done and our stock takes are correct, but in terms of being able to deliver to our customers quicker and better, we should be ahead of the game now.”

The integration saves on space too because the shopping won’t need to be scanned at the till point.

“As the order comes in, it will be on a handheld and as you scan, if you pick the wrong product, it will tell you there and then that you scanned the wrong product. But if it’s got the correct one, you put it in the basket, you bag it, and it can go straight out. So it saves time in terms of the scanning and bagging as well.”

Freezer Fillers

And Sandeep is confident that he can grow sales significantly going forwards.

“We do see a healthy shop, but I think as we keep developing and hopefully Snappy keeps developing their customer-facing app as well to make it easier to shop, we should see that basket continue to grow, particularly as we add our promotions online - our lunchtime meal deals and £6 pound freezer fillers.” 

He has also introduced larger pack sizes to the store.

“We’re getting larger pack sizes specifically for delivery to help grow that basket even more. So things that people couldn’t necessarily carry from the store - but would order to have it delivered - the 18-multipack of coke cans and Fantas etc.

“We’ll probably brand it in a way that if you spend £40 in store, we’ll deliver it for free,” he says. “So if you want those bigger pack sizes, you don’t necessarily have to carry them home.”

With all of his improvements, he is hopeful that his average delivered customer basket spend will continue to climb. “It would be nice to go north of £30,” he says. “If we can hit that, we’ll take it step-by-step from there.”