Restroom cleanliness, layout, and overall design have a bigger impact on c-store and grocer customers than you may realize. An unclean restroom can lead to increased customer complaints, less return customers, decreased in-store purchases and other challenges. On the flip side, having a clean restroom can help encourage customer loyalty, in-store purchases, and even play a key role in building your brand.
How EV Charging may Impact the Future of C-stores
C-store Dive summarized a recent Convenience Leaders Vision Group roundtable discussion in which the future of fuel was a hot topic. With federal funding increasing for electric vehicles and sales tripling in 2022, c-store owners are facing new challenges and looking for new ways to address this trend.
In the recent Convenience Leaders Vision Group roundtable discussion, CEO of Texas Born c-stores Kevin Smartt “expressed concern about understanding the role c-stores should play in EV charging and how that varies between interstate, urban and rural markets,” according to C-store Dive. There is currently a lack of business models for EV charging stations since this is a new idea, making it difficult to figure out how to make it profitable in a convenience store.
Larger c-store chains are not immune to this challenge either. According to C-store dive, Natalie Morhous, President of Racetrac, also expressed concerned over the profitability of EV charging stations and said “profitability is one of the biggest hurdles the Atlanta-based chain of nearly 600 locations has faced with EVs.”
One thing to keep in mind is that EV charging does takes time, the fastest speed for rapid charging stations is 20 minutes to an hour. While there are many challenges to overcome when it comes to EV charging stations, adding them could encourage more in-store purchases and lead to increased sales. With more c-stores turning into places to hang out/community hubs and improving their foodservice offerings in 2023, the growth in electric vehicles could bring more customers in store to support these trends.
It becomes increasingly urgent to come up with a solution as more federal funding goes to supporting more electric vehicle charging networks. Recent funding initiatives include the following according to C-store Dive…
- In September 2022, the Biden administration approved the electric vehicle charging network plans submitted by 35 states, representing $900 million in investment for Fiscal Years 2022 and 2023.
- The National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure program, or NEVI, will be rolling out $5 billion in funding over a five-year period to install chargers across 53,000 miles of U.S. highways. Officials say remaining state plans will continue to be reviewed on a rolling basis.
- The move comes as NACS and other retail associations have urged the U.S. Department of Transportationto incentivize refueling locations to incorporate EV charging.
The convenience store industry, like many other industries, is constantly evolving and store owners need to keep up with the ever changing customer habits and behaviors. With many c-store chains putting plans in place to add EV charging stations to their stores, it will be interesting to see how the industry adapts to the continued growth of electric vehicles.
Prepare to improve your in-store experience in 2023 with this c-store owner guide from goEBT