Location Layout

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Location and Layout Case Study

Layout of Quality Supermarket in Miami, Florida

The Quality Supermarket Group operates over 75 retail outlets in Florida, of which there are around 10 local Miami/Fort Lauderdale supermarkets. Quality supermarkets compete both by choices of location, which are convenient for frequent shoppers, and by the quality of the products and service. To remain profitable every Quality manager must maximize the revenue and contribution per square metre but must also minimize the costs of operating the store, in terms of material handling and checkout productivity, for example.

The Miami supermarket has a somewhat unusual layout, having two entry points and two exit points. In common with most supermarket designs, the checkouts are positioned near the outside wall, but during most of the day only a few are used. Newspapers are sold near the checkout queues, so that customers can catch up with the news while waiting. Checkout operators face into the store, towards the queue, to emphasize the need to work quickly when there is a queue. The store has 10 checkouts – a very large number for a store of only 1500 square metres. This is because there is a large peak of sales in the early evening, and long queues at the checkout would be unacceptable.

Quality uses relatively wide aisles between the shelves, to ensure good flows of trolleys, but this has been at the expense of reduced shelf space which would allow a wider range of products to be stocked. The actual location of all the products is a critical decision, directly affecting the convenience to customers, their level of spontaneous purchases, and the costs of filling the shelves. The overall layout of the supermarket has separate, clearly marked self-service areas for packaged food, drinks, fruit and vegetables, and household items. The served delicatessen area (which sells products with above-average margins) is positioned centrally so that most shoppers must pass it. The...
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