New Total Tools store becomes top performer

Store name: Total Tools Gregory Hills
Store Owner: Shaun Hindley
Buying group: Total Tools

Having only opened in March 2015, Total Tools Gregory Hills has quickly become one of Total Tools’ top performing Sydney stores.

Located in an emerging residential area in outer west Sydney, Total Tools Gregory Hills was the first tenant in a new homemaker centre, up against a strong competitor, from the day it opened its doors.
Being new to the tool industry, store owner Shaun Hindley followed the Total Tools franchising model and guidelines from the beginning, which has met him with great success.
In 2016, just one year after opening the store doors, Shaun received the Total Tools ‘Rookie of the Year’ award for his efforts in regards to sales, store compliance, profit and store reviews as a new Total Tools franchisee.
When discussing the success of the store, Shaun said he believes being the first trade focused large format tools store in the area certainly helped to drive sales initially.
“We also put our success down to maintaining an ongoing focus on customer service, supplying quality goods and also offering a competitive price point,” Shaun said.

Family run store
Shaun said he first decided to open the new store after seeing an advertisement for new franchisees in a local Total Tools’ catalogue.
“I saw a ‘wanted advert’ for new franchisees in a Total Tools catalogue and the ad really appealed to my wife and I, so we made the decision to enquire. The process of enquiry really was seamless and within 12 months the store was up and running and we were trading,” Shaun said.
The two year old store is now a family business run by Shaun, alongside his wife Tina, with their two teenage daughters also helping out at the store wherever they can.
“I am a boilermaker by trade and my wife Tina and I owned and operated a steel fabrication company for seven years prior to commencing the Total Tools’ journey. Tina was also involved in our previous business, within the administration side, as she was in charge of managing the accounts. Her transition into her current role with Total Tools was a great fit. Our store manager, Martin, also has the same background as myself as a former boiler maker,” he said.

Stand out features
When discussing what makes the store stand out from competing stores in the area, Shaun said he believes it is because Total Tools Gregory Hills boasts the widest and largest range of trade tools, which is also combined with the store’s enthusiastic team who go above and beyond for its customers.
“Although we have an extremely diverse range of stock, our staff are also very happy to source products for customers if it is not in stock. This is particularly the case with hard to get items,” Shaun said.
The 1550 square metre store is located within a new shopping complex which consists of eight other tenancies, including Services NSW, with all tenancies within the complex currently occupied.
“The local area of Gregory Hills currently sits as the second fastest growing area in Australia and is also the fastest within New South Wales. There is a great deal of housing and infrastructure happening currently, which is also planned for the next twenty years, and Gregory Hills is also just 15 kilometres from Sydney’s second airport. Our area caters well for young families and demographically this is what our customer base confirms,” Shaun said.
“During the week days, 90 per cent of our foot traffic consists of tradies, while on the weekend our customers make up much more of a mix and are a greater percentage of DIY customers.”
“Some of our most popular items that we sell usually consist of any building related products, including products required for bricklaying and concreting, as well as nails and nail guns. Power tools are also consistently popular, especially when a supplier provides a great kit of various tools. Customers love snapping up these kits,” he said.
Shaun said it is for this reason that he will ensure the store will continue to cater specifically to the growing building and construction trades.
“Our local area is a hub of activity in both commercial and residential sectors, so we hope to maintain good marketing strategies, particularly via social media, radio and print, while ensuring stock within the store matches consumer demand. Staff training will also remain a key focus to ensure that product knowledge remains at the forefront, now and into the future,” he said.

Total support through Total Tools
Total Tools maintains a huge focus on quality customer service, according to Shaun, who said delivering a great experience for shoppers remains top priority within the group.
“The strength, support and size of the Total Tools group, I believe, remain key factors when I negotiate with suppliers. At store level, all members of the Total Tools
Gregory Hill team are highly valued and their hard work is always appreciated. Staff are always provided constant feedback and acknowledged accordingly.”
Shaun said he also believes sales have continued to increase since the store first opened its doors two years ago, due to the high quality of customer service in-store.
“We like to think our customers enjoy their in-store experience each time they shop with us, which is why they continue to return to our store whenever they require assistance or simply wish to buy quality products,” he said.
“We currently hold two insider nights a year, which offers customers within our database great specials, night only deals and supplier prices. These nights are very popular within our store and are a great night for all involved. We are always looking at ways of making each insider night bigger and better.”
“We also ensure that we continue to maintain our marketing by advertising on our local radio station, who are always very supportive of any store events. We also have various social media accounts via Facebook and Instagram, which are updated regularly with great information, photos and videos,” Shaun said.

Looking into the future…
Despite the store being reasonably new, Shaun is already making plans to continually upgrade and revise the store, with an updated refit of all racking scheduled within two to three years. In the mean-time, he said staff training and a focus on providing the most appropriate stock for the store’s customer base will remain a priority, so store sales continue to grow well into the future.