Traditionally, the convenience store has primarily served as quick stop for gas on the way to work or on a road trip. In recent years, however, a number of convenience stores, from the small mom-and-pop shop to the mega travel centers, have added a number of merchandise offerings, including grab-and-go food, adult beverages, toiletries and even yard-art. Today’s consumers are taking advantage of these offerings as they’re stretched for time as they run between work, children’s activities, networking commitments and home.
As a result shoppers are spending less time in grocery stores and more time in convenience stores, leading to 9% increase in average basket size. With more than 152,000 stores across the U.S. alone, c-stores offer extended hours for quick shopping with an array of merchandise and speedy transactions. According to the
National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS), the convenience store industry accounts for more than $700 billion in annual sales and 33.9% of all retail outlets in the U.S., however convenience stores are often individually owned and short-staffed. Despite the constraints, market research firm IBIS World says convenience store operators are eager to adapt to ever-evolving consumer tastes to increase sales.
There are a number of options available to help reach and engage shoppers while meeting their ever-evolving needs, including the implementation of electronic shelf labels (ESLs) to easily manage and adjust product pricing and information to fluctuating product demands while easily handling inventory and creating in-store sales. With ESLs, convenience store proprietors can easily encourage impulse buys and known shopping trends such as coffee sales during morning rush hour, grab-and-go food specials during the lunch hour and beer promotions during peak hours while also attending to customers at the point of sale or restocking merchandising. At Displaydata, we’ve seen first hand how the use of ESLs reduces labor costs needed to replace paper labels on the shelf and allowing store employees to focus on the immediate needs of their customers.