Neighbourhood Retailer 2017 – The Award Categories

Entering the Neighbourhood Retailer Awards has never been easier, and with 17 categories to enter there are opportunities for every kind of retailer.

Make sure you read the criteria before completing your entry form.

The criteria for each award are as follows:

The Retailer of the Year

Sponsored by Hi! Street digital media

The Retailer of the Year is selected from the winners of each of the categories. In the final stages of adjudication, they also receive a site visit and an intensive interview and audit by judges.

Neighbourhood Store of the Year, Category 1 (up to 1,750 sq ft)

Judges of Category 1 stores look at all aspects of the customer offering particularly the merchandising, store services and customer care. The award is for Neighbourhood Stores no larger than 1,500 sq ft.

Neighbourhood Store of the Year, Category 2 (1,751 – 3,500 sq ft)

Sponsored by Nestle Cereals

Judges of Category 2 stores look at all aspects of the customer offering particularly the merchandising, store services and customer care. The award is for Neighbourhood Stores no larger than 3,500 sq ft.

Neighbourhood Store of the Year, Category 3 (3,501 to 7,000 sq ft)

Sponsored by Revolution Laundrette

Judges of Category 3 stores look at all aspects of the customer offering particularly the merchandising, store services and customer care. The award is for Neighbourhood Stores no larger than 7,000 sq ft.

Neighbourhood Store of the Year, Category 4 (7,001 plus)

Sponsored by Captiol Essentials

Judges of Category 3 stores look at all aspects of the customer offering particularly the merchandising, store services and customer care. The category is for Neighbourhood Stores larger than 7,001 sq ft.

Forecourt of the Year – Category 1 – with convenience store (up to 1,750 sq ft)

Sponsored by Costa Express

This category is open to any forecourt with a convenience store which is smaller than 1,750 sq ft. Each forecourt with adjoining convenience store entered will be required to identify clearly the size category into which it fits. Judges of this category will assess the levels of forecourt standards as appropriate to the size of the site and store. This will include:

  • A clean and attractive forecourt area with convenient and well maintained services.
  • An inviting and well stocked convenience store which provides an exceptional shopping experience.

The process will judge how well the product range and services reflect the size of the store and forecourt and entrants will gain higher scores by providing value added services  which enhance the customer experience on the forecourt and in the store.  These categories will be judged initially by mystery visits.

Forecourt Store of the Year, Category 2 with convenience store (1,751 sq ft plus)

Sponsored by JTI

This category is open to any forecourt with a convenience store which is larger than 1,750 sq ft. Each forecourt with adjoining convenience store entered will be required to identify clearly the size category into which it fits. Judges of this category will assess the levels of forecourt standards as appropriate to the size of the site and store. This will include:

  • A clean and attractive forecourt area with convenient and well maintained services.
  • An inviting and well stocked convenience store which provides an exceptional shopping experience.

The process will judge how well the product range and services reflect the size of the store and forecourt and entrants will gain higher scores by providing value added services  which enhance the customer experience on the forecourt and in the store.  These categories will be judged initially by mystery visits.

CTN of the Year

Sponsored by Logic

The category is specifically for confectionery, tobacco and newsagent stores and not general convenience stores. The judges will be looking for a CTN, which clearly meets the needs of its customers and stocks an extensive variety of CTN products. The specific criteria will include the following:

 

  • Product range, available services and facilities, access and parking.
  • Merchandising and display including layout, signage and presentation.
  • Customer service including staff availability, efficiency, specialist product knowledge and level of staff engagement.

This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.

Off-Licence of the Year

Sponsored by Boost Drinks

This award is open to all off-licensed premises. The judges will be looking for an off-licence that clearly meets the needs of its customers and stocks an extensive variety of wines, beers, spirits and related products. Judges will be looking for exceptional customer service, staff with extensive product knowledge, and outstanding in store merchandising and display. This category will be judged by mystery visit.

Community Store of the Year

Sponsored by Q Radio

Finalists in the Community Store of the Year award category will be required to have a full and active role in their local communities, with demonstrable examples of philanthropy and social enterprise.

Unlike all other categories, the Community Store of the Year Award winner is judged by public vote.

Store Manager of the Year

The Store Manager of the Year is selected from the entrants who have been nominated or have self-nominated by completing a detailed written submission. In the final stages of adjudication they attend an intensive interview with the judging panel.

The judging criteria focuses on a number of areas:

  • Measurable business success
  • Staff development
  • Their approach to containing cost and improving margin
  • Customer focus
  • Innovation

Best Customer Service

Sponsored by Imperial Tobacco

The judges will be looking for a convenience store which provides excellent service to customers through their commitment to customer care and the provision of an appropriate range of services and facilities. Specific criteria will include a clean and well maintained forecourt and store area, welcoming and well presented staff providing efficient service, and clean and tidy washrooms.  This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.

Bakery of the Year

Sponsored by Aryzta

This category is open to all independent bakeries or in store bakeries that provide a range of products that keep their customers coming back. Judges will be looking for both innovative and traditional products to suit customer demand. Stores will be judged on the merchandising and presentation, counter services and pre-pack offering, quality, freshness and value for money. Customer service, hygiene standards and specialist product knowledge will be taken into consideration when judging this award.  This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.

Butcher of the Year

Sponsored by Spices Nice

This category is open to all independent butcher shops or in store butchers that can demonstrate expertise in their craft.  Judges will be looking for an innovative and exciting range of products coupled with expert product knowledge and outstanding customer care.  Stores will be judged on the merchandising and presentation, counter services and pre-pack offering, quality of products and value for money. Customer service, hygiene standards and specialist product knowledge will be taken into consideration when judging this award.  This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.

Newcomer of the Year

This category will be judged against the appropriate criteria for the type and size of the store and must be in business not more than two years up to and including June 21, 2014. This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.

Pharmacy of the Year

The judges will be looking for a pharmacy that meets the needs of the community it serves and has a high quality range of services combined with friendly and efficient service, the specific criteria will include the following:

  • Product range, available services and facilities, access and parking.
  • Merchandising and display including layout, signage and presentation.
  • Customer service including staff availability, efficiency, specialist product knowledge and level of staff engagement.

This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.

Deli of the Year

Sponsored by EIQA

The judges will be looking for an in-store deli or stand alone deli that clearly meets and exceeds the requirements of its customers.  They will be looking for innovative choices and visual impact in terms of the hot and cold food offering as well as quality of the food and value for money. Customer service, hygiene standards and specialist product knowledge will be taken into consideration when judging this award.  This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Sponsored by RiverRidge Recycling
The Lifetime Achievement Award is decided by the Neighbourhood Retailer editorial board. While the board may nominate an individual based on their perceived contribution to the industry, nominations and self-nominations are welcome.