Retail Expansion: What You Need to Know to Grow Your Business

Retail Expansion: What You Need to Know to Grow Your Business

Portrait of Jessica Lark's Author
Portrait of Jessica Lark's Author

Jessica O

November 28, 2023


Nov 28, 2023


3 min read

retail store expansion open sign
retail store expansion open sign
retail store expansion open sign
retail store expansion open sign

Expanding your business in the dynamic retail sector presents vast opportunities and significant challenges. Success stories like MIXUE in Vietnam and ZUS Coffee in Malaysia illustrate the potential rewards of increasing market presence. However, Flash Coffee's rapid shutdown in Singapore serves as a cautionary tale against hasty and unplanned expansion. To thrive in this competitive landscape, businesses must engage in strategic planning and utilize effective tools. Lark emerges as a crucial ally, offering comprehensive solutions to the multifaceted challenges of retail expansion.

Streamlining retail operations for market expansion

Scaling from one store to a network of outlets represents a significant undertaking. This expansion requires a fundamental shift in operational management. Traditional methods, such as manual record-keeping, are inadequate for more extensive operations, often leading to disorganization, customer dissatisfaction, and increased costs.

Lark revolutionizes this area by streamlining and enhancing operational processes. It aids retail chains in upgrading to sophisticated inventory management systems and standardizing operating procedures. This shift ensures uniformity in operations and maintains the brand’s quality across all locations.

Shop inventory management with Lark Sheets

Herbal Farmer's Inventory Management on Lark

In Malaysia, Herbal Farmer employs Lark Sheets to manage its extensive inventory. They utilize its real-time tracking features to adjust promotions dynamically, responding quickly to stock level changes. This agility helps them maintain optimal inventory levels and reduce wastage.

Meanwhile, in Taiwan, Journey Kaffe uses Lark for effective defect reporting. Staff can report issues through the platform, triggering immediate notifications to the responsible teams. This rapid response system ensures swift problem-solving, enhancing store efficiency and customer satisfaction.

store defecting reporting using Lark Base

Store Defect Reporting on Lark Base

Lark digitized our daily operations, improving efficiency and communication. With facility inspections and defect reporting now 35% faster and administrative tasks reduced by 20%, Lark allows us to focus on what matters - our customers. Streamlined, effective, and innovative, Lark is a game-changer in operational excellence for our coffee shop chain.

Linda Lin, Operations Training Manager, Journey Kaffe

Scaling your staff for retail success

As stores multiply, so does the need for a larger, well-trained workforce. Transitioning from a small, cohesive team to a larger, more diverse one involves challenges such as rapid hiring, effective training, and seamless onboarding.

Lark significantly eases this transition. It provides comprehensive training features that enable new hires to integrate smoothly into their roles. Alongside these features, Lark’s automated help desk offers prompt HR support, reducing the administrative burden and fostering timely communication within the expanding team.

Moreover, Lark enhances the training experience with its robust documentation and Wiki features. These features house up-to-date guides and resources, eliminating versioning issues and ensuring everyone can access the latest information. New staff can easily search for training materials, allowing them to learn at their own pace without constantly needing assistance from managers or colleagues. This self-service approach to learning empowers employees and streamlines the training process, making it more efficient for both the trainees and the organization. The platform’s attendance tracking feature is equally vital for managing this expanded team, ensuring accountability and visibility of staff presence. 

Haidilao custom workplace for SOPs and employee guidelines

Access the same, up-to-date guidelines, standards, company policies, and other necessary materials from a single location

Haidilao, a globally recognized restaurant chain, leverages Lark to disseminate essential updates and information. This ensures uniformity in communication across its diverse workforce. Moreover, the Lark Help Desk automates over 70% of routine inquiries, significantly reducing time spent on administrative tasks and allowing for a focus on more strategic activities.

Haidilao staff help desk to improve customer service responsiveness

Employee service responsiveness improved with automated responses

Lark empowers us to provide the service we have been proud of and helps us pave the way for all restaurant managers to solve their growth challenges through digitization.

Yang Xibei, Director of Branding and Marketing, Super Hi International Holding Ltd

Unlocking data insights for store expansion

In the initial stages of a retail business, your current tools may be sufficient for managing sales data. However, as the company expands and the number of stores grows, these methods become less effective. The absence of real-time sales data can result in missed opportunities and financial inaccuracies.

Lark's analytics feature provides a powerful solution to this challenge. Managers input sales data into Lark Base daily, equipping upper management with instant, actionable revenue insights. This timely information is crucial for making informed decisions across an expanding network of stores.

migration of sales reporting from Viber chats to Lark Base dashboard

Sales reporting transitioned from Viber chats to Lark Base dashboard

For instance, Mama Lou's, a popular restaurant chain in the Philippines, dramatically improved its efficiency after adopting Lark. They significantly reduced the time required for data entry and validation, transforming a process that took hours into one completed in under 30 minutes. This improvement saves time and enhances accuracy in financial reporting and decision-making.

Mastering global retail: overcoming cultural hurdles

Entering new, international markets introduces unique challenges, including navigating cultural differences and language barriers.

Cross-border meetings with translated subtitles

Employees from different backgrounds can freely express themselves in their native language

Lark assists in overcoming these challenges with its multi-language capabilities and unified system architecture. This ensures all employees, regardless of location or language, have consistent access to the same information. Such uniformity is essential for successful global market expansion, enabling businesses to adapt seamlessly to different international markets.

Strengthening communication in expanding stores

Effective communication is crucial in any growing business. Maintaining clear and consistent communication across the organization becomes a significant challenge as the number of stores and employees increases.

Lark addresses this by offering tools for efficient and clear communication. Features like advanced search and Lingo help employees quickly find and understand company-specific information, maintaining operational smoothness and team unity.

Lark Lingo for Haidilao to reduce corporate jargons

Teams can easily locate the operational knowledge they need with Lingo


Lark provides a complete solution for the challenges of retail expansion, ensuring operational consistency, efficient staffing management, informed decision-making, and clear communication. Its tools streamline operations, facilitate team growth, and offer real-time analytics, making it an invaluable asset for businesses aiming to scale.

With features tailored for global market expansion and a focus on accessible training materials, Lark is a tool and a strategic ally in growth. It simplifies the complexities of expanding a business, empowering companies to navigate new markets and maintain operational excellence confidently. For businesses seeking growth, Lark stands as a critical partner in achieving success in the dynamic world of retail.