When reviewing the history, it is evident that convenience stores have always adapted and changed to what the consumer needs. Over time, from only providing ice cream, c-stores have expanded to provide necessary supplies (e.g., bread, eggs, milk) after grocery stores closed to appeal to the last minute shopper. Ultimately, c-stores gained the upper-hand in being known for its convenience (NACS’s Fresh Produce Distribution) and availability.
Eventually, convenience stores have bypassed issues surrounding maintaining fresh produce by investing in processed and well-preserved products. This direction hit two birds with one stone. Not only did c-stores save costs on preserving products, but they also recognized the consumer demand of offering products that would save time and were delicious. However, despite the profitable niche, c-stores have also gained the perception of being “unhealthy” and thus a place to avoid if trying to maintain health.
It’s now a new year and society packs on the burden of upholding New Year resolutions. Whether it is spending more time with family, reading more books or visiting more places, there is always a goal to achieve. In fact, according to Statistic Brain, the number one New Year’s resolution is to lose weight followed by a self-improvement goal.
The desire to be more fit and healthy is an opportunity for all c-stores, especially around this time of year. By offering products that cater to the health-conscience and perhaps even creating a food service option, your brand will evolve as a place of “destination” rather than a place of desperation.
Since 20% of consumers already notice c-stores offering healthy options, it is only a matter of time before this trend becomes an expectation. Therefore, it would be an effective tactic to cater to these types of customers, so you gain favor over your competitors.
Putting aside the fact that it is the beginning of a new year, the trend to adapt healthier products and services has been growing for quite some time. King Casey, a retail consultant for the c-store industry, believes as c-stores start to revamp their business by creating a modern, fresh, and healthy food service atmosphere, these c-stores will start to have the competitive edge over quick-service restaurants for 2017 (Convenience Store News).
Because it is now a new year, this is your chance to upsell in your c-store and refresh your brand image. Let customers know you are there for them in their weight-loss needs by providing products that will lead them to success. Educate them in your fresh produce and healthy choice options. You will be the convenient option that customers will prefer and potentially can gain preference over even grocery store if you play your cards right.
To take advantage of other rebranding incentives, click here. Otherwise, if you wish to learn more about food service ordering, forecourt merchandising, or even a point-of-sale system to help you manage your items, visit our Learning Center.