Open 24 Hours, 7 Days a Week!

Open 24 HoursA few years back I interviewed the [then] CEO of Wal-Mart, David Glass.  One of the things he told me stayed with me for years. He told me that Wal-Mart has succeeded when the smaller stores have failed—not because Wal-Mart steams over them with their lower prices—but becuase the company was more customer friendly. When I asked him for an example he said that Wal-Marts are always open.   In many towns, he explained, stores close down weekends or at least Sundays. That’s when people want to shop the most, he insisted.

Now I know Wal-Mart has had its share of problems since founder Sam Walton died in 1992, but Mr. Glass has a point. In the small Illinois town in which I live a number of  key stores are closed  Sundays. The neighborhood supermarket is closed Sunday, as is my car dealership where I service my car. Then there is the neighborhood dry cleaner and many other stores that I need and rely on. On those days me and scores of other customers shop elsewhere, which, if your a business trying to hold on to customers and acquire new ones, is the worst place for them to shop. It doesn’t matter if the store is a Wal-Mart, Costco, or any other store that keeps its doors open seven days a week. You don’t want them exploring new options.

I naturally respect business owners who close on Saturday or Sundays for religious convictions. But in these tough times, if religion is not the reason and you can afford to keep your store open on weekends, give it a try. You will be keeping your customers close to home and winning new ones. And you will make my life a lot easier.

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