Memorial Home Services changes it up in search of retail success

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

LINCOLN, Ill. - When Memorial Home Services' local hospital moved, the provider decided to move with it—and took the opportunity to change more than its location.

MHS expanded in June to include a myriad of new products in its new 4,000-square-foot location, including supplies that the nearby doctors and nurses might take advantage of, like stethoscopes and nametag holders.

"We're not discontinuing anything," said Janice Sexton, the store's manager. "We're just expanding so we're not relying on our insurance companies for our income."

Previously located in an old car dealership, MHS moved to a shopping center within minutes of the new hospital. The location should provide MHS with a convenience factor that's about more than easier parking.

"We're going to be taking advantage of the clustering effect," said Monty Knepler, MHS retail services manager. "You get into an area with other businesses and draw the traffic in there."

Other new products include hot/cold therapy, an orthotic line, accessories for hospital beds, and more cash-and-carry items to help shift the provider's focus to retail.

MHS has already seen a positive customer response from the move, with more than 250 people attending the grand opening on June 25, bringing in more than $500 worth of sales in a two-hour period.  

To get ideas for the new location, Knepler visited several HME providers around the state.

Knepler is very pleased with the results. 

"I was a sales rep for 10 years and I got to see a lot of (HME businesses)," said Knepler. "This is definitely top notch. I believe it will be the premier DME supply store in downstate Illinois."