Why Convenience Stores Will Continue to Grow in 2016
C-Stores take in $1 of every $22 spent everyday in the U.S.
In the last few years, convenience stores have grown to account for over a third of all retailers in the United States, making their presence significantly larger than other retailers such as drug and grocery stores. Even with this increase, c-stores are expected to continue to grow even more over the next year, in part because of these factors:
Convenience stores have jumped on the healthier lifestyle bandwagon and started to expand their fresh food departments. Not only are fresh foods growing within convenience stores, but so are “better for you” options such as protein and granola bars and single serve smoothies and natural teas. This journey into the healthy food landscape has allowed convenience stores to stay on top of what consumers are looking for and adapt with the changing times.
Consumers are on a time crunch.
As every year passes, consumers become more and more anxious to save time throughout the day. That’s why convenience stores are expected to continue to grow throughout the upcoming years. Consumers will look to convenience stores as a “run in, run out” retailer where they can grab the essentials and race out the door without waiting in line, going up and down aisles, or fighting for a parking spot outside. Food distributors and c-store managers should remember to merchandise popular snacks in the most popular areas of the store, including around the register, on the way to the bathroom, and at the end of aisles where they can be easily spotted.
Change in shopping habits.
As the Millennial generation continues to grow, so does their purchasing power, so it’s important to understand the way these consumers shop. Unlike prior generations, Millennials are more likely to do one smaller trip to the grocery store per week, and then supplement with other fill-in trips. Where do these trips take place? Convenience stores. C-stores will continue to grow as Millennials stop in throughout the week to pick up essentials that they missed on their weekly trip to the grocery store.
Growing customer base.
One of the main factors behind the success of convenience stores perhaps lies with their customer base. Over the years, convenience stores have expertly managed to retain their existing customer base of people in need of fuel, cigarettes, or quick snacks, while also expanding to draw in an entirely new generation of shoppers. Food distributors and brands should be aware that there needs to be a balance of convenience store products that carry to the core customer base, while also continuing to draw in the newer, younger generation of shoppers.
Ready to take the next steps to get your product in over 35,000 convenience and grocery stores across the country? Contact Mr. Checkout Distributors to talk to a team of experienced distributors today.