Taschenrechner

I make no secret of the fact I love shopping at Aldi.

More often than not I spend far longer in there than I could begin to justify.

Time which is usually spent deciding if I really need a new wood-fired pizza oven, inflatable swimming pool, or 2kg Tomahawk steak.

Aldi (and their close rival, Lidl) have stormed the UK supermarket scene in the past few years, thanks in no small part to their competitive pricing.

Although, their ability to get away with copying existing brands' designs has probably helped too.

But beyond that, every Aldi store runs like a well oiled, German machine.

They're so hyper-focussed on efficiency, in fact, that all till staff are monitored to ensure they're swiping enough items per minute.

Then there's the packaging.

Rather than the standard 'barcode on one side' approach most retailers take, the majority of Aldi's products have got a barcode on every single side.

Meaning no matter how someone chucks it across the scanner, it's going to scan.

And while I don't know how much time, and subsequently, money, this saves the company, I'm willing to bet there's a clever German with a big calculator (or Taschenrechner, to them) who does.

In the cases of big companies like Aldi, small improvements in efficiency can be extremelyprofitable.

After all, even an extra 1% on their bottom line would nett them an additional £2-3 million in the UK alone.

The same is not true for all businesses.

You see, according to BEIS, who've probably got as many calculators as Aldi's team, the mean turnover of a UK SME in 2018 was just £350k.

That's less than some Aldi stores will turn in a month.

So why do so many small business owners get caught up in chasing tiny efficiency improvements?

I mean, would you rather focus on getting:

Your email rate from 19% to 20%...

Your clickthrough rate from 3.5% to 3.7%...

Your lead costs from £1 to £0.98...

Or tapping into a new lead source altogether?

I know which I'd rather choose.

Nick Fisher