Pet Age recently spoke with Nancy Bleznak, owner of Medford Pet Supplies in Medford, New Jersey, about navigating changes that have allowed the store to thrive in today’s industry.
Q When did you first open Medford Pet Supplies, and how has it evolved over the years?
A Medford Pet Supplies opened in November 1994 in a 1,200-square-foot space. In 2010, we made a long overdue move to a 2,800-square-foot space in a nearby shopping center where we continue to grow and flourish.
Q How would you describe your store in terms of the merchandise that you offer?
A The majority of the inventory is for dogs and cats with food, treats, toys and supplies being the main focus. We also have a varied selection of small animal, bird, fish and reptile products. The basic premise of the store is to offer more high-end products than average. Offering high quality products at a fair price is a must for myself and my customers.
Q What do you look for in the pet products that you carry?
A I am very selective about the items that I choose to offer my customers. I do my research on new products that I bring in as well as making sure that I am informed about any changes in existing inventory. Quality of products, integrity of manufacturer, where the products are made and how ingredients are sourced all play a role in my decision making.
Q How would you describe the relationship between consumers and a retailer?
A I believe that trust is paramount. Customers depend on me and my staff to give them well informed, upfront and honest information about the products they are purchasing for themselves and their pets. Honesty begets a customer for life.
Q What has been the key to your lasting success?
A I run my store by the same rule that I run my life: “Always do the right thing.” I believe only good can come from it. I feel that following that rule and running “the business” in a very disciplined manner is what has been my key to success. Paying strict attention to the numbers, consistency with ordering, keeping purchase percentages stable and balanced, rotating product, tracking cost increases, tracking credits and all of those areas that equate to watching your money is crucial.