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New store supplements shoppers

Manager Becky Salfai points out some changes on the sales floor to employee Taylor Rutledge. (Republican Eagle photo by John Russett)

For Becky Salfai, manager of the new GNC store in Red Wing, all it took was a couple months.

“Opportunity arises very fast if you’re the right person,” she said.

Salfai said she worked for GNC in Rochester for two months before taking the managing role at the new Red Wing store.

GNC used to have a Red Wing seven years ago, she said, but due to rising costs in rent, that store closed.

It wasn’t that business was bad, but the rent tripled, Salfai said.

Thomas Weist, regional sales director for GNC, came to Red Wing for a meeting and noticed there wasn’t a store here, Salfai said.

He began the search for a place and not too long after the new store located at 166 Tyler Road South was in the works.

The store opened with a soft opening Sept. 11 and the grand opening Sept. 12.

“We’ve had quite a lot of guests come in happy we’re back,” she said, adding those customers who traveled to Hastings or Hudson stores were pleased to cut back on the travel time.

Salfai said there was over $500 in sales on the soft opening alone, but that customer flow can be very unpredictable for GNC stores.

So far Salfai said she can have anywhere from as few as four to over 20 customers any given day.

Regardless of the number, she said she always tries to provide everyone who walks through the doors with the best possible experience.

“I always want to go above and beyond our customers’ expectations,” Salfai said. “We are just here to help people live their best life.”

When it comes to opening the store, Salfai said the biggest part is setting goals for herself and her staff.

“It’s really fun to have those goals and beat them. It gives you that little bit of amp in the morning to get going and get your day started,” she said.

Salfai is also a personal trainer and said she will help people with everything from the supplements in the store to their workout routines.

One thing which has surprised her so far is how much some people have opened up to her while shopping in the store.

“It’s actually amazing how much people will open up to you. A supplement store you wouldn’t think would get too personal, but it gets really personal. You hear a lot of stories, a lot of rewarding stories,” Salfai said.

She said she has already gotten to know some of the regulars who come in every morning and she wants to create a welcoming environment for everyone.

“I hope we become not just a new door to walk in, but a regular place to visit,” she said.

Three other employees and one new hire work with Salfai at the store.

The details

What: GNC

Where: 166 Tyler Road S.

When: Monday-Friday: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday: 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Phone: 651-388-5120