New bulk discount store opens in Devonshire
A new bulk discount store in Devonshire has added a string to the bow of Mattress Express & More, which opened its doors just before Christmas.
It was always the intention of owner Sheila Pitcher to have a bulk discount outlet joined to the home furnishings store, and the spacious premises on Hermitage Road made that possible.
Once she had established Mattress Express & More, she set to work opening the second part of the business, Bulk Express & More.
The bulk goods shop sells everything from food and drinks, to paper towels, pampers, and bottled water.
Ms Pitcher said customer numbers were good and the shop has a healthy turnover of merchandise.
“We have a new container arriving every week to restock,” she said.
The tougher economic climate of recent years has created strong demand for shopping discounts, with many people buying certain items in bulk in order to stretch their dollars further.
“Everyone is trying to save that extra 25 cents. If they see they can make that saving by coming here then they are going to come,” said Ms Pitcher.
She said the shop was looking into the possibility of offering some kind of seniors’ discount in the future.
Although they are located in the same building, there are separate entrances for Mattress Express and Bulk Express. However, a walk-through section inside allows customers to conveniently visit both sides of the business.
“We have people coming in to one of the shops and finding their way through to the other side,” said Ms Pitcher, who said diversifying into two distinct lines of business made sense because it increased the chances that one side of the enterprise would remain strong should the other experience a drop in sales.
Having a dual store was always Ms Pitcher’s intention, even if it has made things more complex logistically.
“It’s a challenge having the two lines of business. You have to look at which one you want to come first, such as when there are containers to offload.”
In tandem with opening up Bulk Express & More, Ms Pitcher has been refining and improving the Mattress Express & More side of the business. The range of bedroom furniture and dining room sets has been expanded, and additional decor added, such as fish tanks, to make the showrooms more inviting.
“We want customers to feel at home when they come in,” said Ms Pitcher, who pointed out that the two Express stores also have plenty of free parking available outside for customers. There is also a delivery service available for large items.
Reflecting on her first eight months in business, Ms Pitcher said: “It’s a wonderful feeling.”
Bulk Express & More and Mattress Express & More are located at 6 Hermitage Road, Devonshire, near the SAL construction and DIY outlet.