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Award for the best in retail

Reitsport BRANCHE Retailer Award powered by spoga horse

The trade magazine Reitsport BRANCHE, together with spoga horse as the official media partner, honors Europe's best retailers. What is the award all about? We take a look at the history, evaluation criteria as well as the awarding process.

"Have you always wanted to be the best?" That was the all-important question with which the Retailer Award - then still known as the "Reitsport Markt Retailer Award" - started its triumphal procession in the fall of 2007. The team around the current editor-in-chief of Reitsport BRANCHE, Michael Meenen, had initiated the Retailer Award and called on Germany's specialist retailers from the equestrian sector to apply for the award. And a whole series of well-positioned specialist stores did just that.

A lot has happened since then. The old "Retailer Award" is history.

Now the Reitsport BRANCHE Retailer Award powered by spoga horse beckons in a modern guise with a range of interesting benefits for the best of the best!!!

Procedure - this is how winners are made

Michael Meenen and his staff will sift through the application forms, visit appealing specialty stores, examine them closely, and present the results to an expert jury. This panel will ultimately decide who will be awarded the coveted title. Decision day is thereby the 1. December. Then they will meet on the premises of Koelnmesse, compare businesses, discuss and ultimately name national and international title holders. The jury, which by the way has been expanded and staffed with knowledgeable experts, will also be the one to award prizes for special categories and certificates for the best specialty stores. The awards ceremony will then take place during spoga horse 2022 in Cologne.

The Retailer Award - these are the decisive innovations

The Retailer Award has undergone further development in terms of the selection and assessment criteria for the specialist stores: this year, for the first time, dealers and suppliers were also called upon to recommend outstanding specialist stores for the award. The selection criteria now also focus on factors such as sustainability and hybrid sales strategies. In addition, with its now international orientation, the retail award is adapting to the globalized market. Last but not least, winners and award-winning stores can benefit from a number of interesting benefits in addition to certificates and trophies: From a written evaluation with a consulting summary to certification as an audited specialty store and an invitation to Koelnmesse, including an overnight stay.

Award-worthy?- what is evaluated?

The specialized trade is the decisive interface between the manufacturer and the customer. This is where riders, vaulters and drivers find exactly the products they need for their sport and their passion for horses. This is where the goods, which the manufacturers produce with heart and soul, are brought to the end customer.

The breadth and depth of the stores' assortment play an important role in the evaluation, as do the optimal presentation and competent advice on the products. In addition to aspects of store design, the focus of the assessment of the stores is increasingly on sustainable action and the modern orientation of the multimedia sales channels. A further and very decisive evaluation criterion: customer service!

Retail award

Image: Presseservice Meenen

Spoga horse asks

What is the significance of the Retailer Award for you as a specialist retailer, and why do you face the evaluation by the jury?

Eva Mönke, Reitsport Frölich:

To become better and better

"For me, the award has the internal incentive not to stand still, because through the continuous participation, it is also always necessary to rethink old habits. Also we examine thereby once in the year the entire optics of the house, because we go with hopefully open eyes by the area and try with "strange" eyes errors or unsightliness to find and eliminate.

Excellent external effect

I think continuity is particularly important for the external image, because it is certainly much better for the customer to always be at the forefront than just once. I could not advertise with an award from 2017, that would look strange. But in series - like on the homepage or through the hung up certificates - it looks different.

Super advertising effect

We have our main awards - best business and craft - on the car and on the store entrance door. The certificates hang in the customer's field of vision and the certificates for which there are trophies stand with the same in a glass showcase in the customer area."

Eva Mönke runs the Frölich equestrian store in Weiterstadt together with her husband Ralf Mönke. The two are among the series winners and have also taken home one or two prizes in the special categories. They are also involved in the newly launched Retailer Award.

Melanie Schierholz, Melli's Ridershop:

Score with novelties

"I applied for the Retailer Award again after 5 years, because a lot of new things have happened at our shop in the last 2 years, such as a new indoor riding arena for our saddle fittings. In addition, we have optimized many things in our store.

Increase awareness through award

Through a possible award, I hope to gain more awareness in the national area and I also actively use the coverage for my advertising by sharing the report on social media and on my advertising flyers."

Melanie Schierholz is a real bank in the North German horse scene: not only as a breeder of outstanding ponies but also - and above all - as a specialist equestrian dealer. In her Melli `s Reiterschop she offers in the greater Bremen area, everything that the rider's heart desires. In addition to the products, this also includes services such as saddle construction and fitting as well as specialist seminars on equestrian topics. A riding hall was built especially for this purpose. This year it wants to know it again and applies for the Retailer Award.“

You want to know more about the Retailer Award? Contact the team from the equestrian industry.

Check it out: You can follow what happens next with this year's Retailer Award on our social media channels. There we will reveal which stores have been shortlisted and will now be visited in person....