Judging process

The Convenience Awards recognise, reward and celebrate true champions of convenience retail. The 21 awards are divided into two groups – self-entry and research-based. Below, you will find a detailed explanation on how each of our award categories are calculated. We are incredibly proud of this process and believe that the independent nature of this approach is critical to the integrity and stature of these awards.

Self-entry categories

Self-entered categories look for the very best local stores, doing the best job possible for their customer base. But we understand this can have a different meaning to each person and in different locations, so the judges aim to get out to visit as many stores as possible to form a fully-rounded view of the business in its local context. The award winners will be set apart by their dedication to high standards, engaged and enthusiastic staff and a diverse range of products.

First-stage judging

It would not be feasible to visit every store that enters The Convenience Awards, so the first stage of judging is to select a longlist of stores that appear to be the strongest contenders, and to choose the overall winners from this list. The initial selection is made entirely from the entry and photographs submitted, so it is important to make sure your entry shows your store in the best possible light. There is no such thing as a definitive recipe for success in the Awards, but all of the winners have some ingredients in common, so your entry should reflect this.

Business success – sales figures, trading history, sales mix for different product categories. Remember there are separate awards categories based on store size, so a high level of sales per square foot is just as important as an impressive total turnover.

Range – outline the full convenience product offering you supply to your customers, highlighting any particular areas of strength and/or strong growth.

High standards – commitment to cleanliness, product availability and appealing merchandising.

Engaged staff – enthusiasm, teamwork and product knowledge within the store team, plus a commitment to supporting charities or other local events and organisations.

The last field on the entry form – where we ask you to tell us why you think you should win – is the opportunity for you to put the performance of your store in context. This is your final chance to impress the judges with your guiding philosophy and approach to retail, anything that sets you apart from the local (or national) competition, and how you have overcome adversity to lead the business to a position of success.

Second-stage judging

The successful candidates from the first stage will then be visited by a member of the Convenience Store team to gather more information and photographs of the store. These visits will be arranged in advance with as much notice as possible, but please be aware the judges only have a short time window in which to carry out all the visits.

Final-stage judging

Information about the leading candidates from the store visits will then be submitted to the wider judging panel, who will decide on the shortlist for each award and, ultimately, the final winners. The shortlist will be announced several weeks before the awards presentation evening itself.

Research Categories

Research-based awards recognise both head office retailers, suppliers and service providers to the UK convenience channel.

Award categories targeting head office retailers are calculated using Lumina Intelligence’s Convenience Tracking Programme, the UK’s largest convenience shopper study. Lumina Intelligence’s Convenience Tracking Programme is the authority on the complex and fragmented UK convenience market.

Built from analysis of over 50,000 shopping trips per year, the research surveys shoppers on where they shopped, how they shopped, when they conducted their shop, what they purchased and why they made the decisions they did. Shoppers are also asked to rate their shopping experience across a range of different KPIs, including range, availability, ease of shop and friendliness of staff.

The supplier/service provider awards are based on feedback from interviews with over 250 convenience store retailers.