C-store owners should recognize the importance of having a stable inventory of fresh foods. Convenience has become a non-negotiable expectation for consumers. People want one-stop-shops that are quick, easy, and affordable. Since c-stores are no longer the only business catering to this need, retailers should focus on going beyond convenience and incorporating high quality foodservice options.
Foodservice Fueling In-store Convenience Sales
Convenience store foodservice sales have boosted in-store sales to $302.8 billion, a 9% increase from the previous year, according to NACS State of the Industry Summit. The report also noted, in-store sales accounted for 33.4% of industry sales, with total sales being $906.1 billion. 5 reasons for this increase according to NACS, are…
- Categories like snacks, candy, and packaged beverages reaching double-digit sales growth
- The average basket spend per visit increased almost 5% to $7.52
- The convenience store count growing to 150,174 stores
- Over 40% increase in fuel sales
- Foodservice sales growing to account for almost 26% of monthly in-store sales and over 36% of in-store gross margin
With these increases happening despite the many operational challenges this year brought, store owners should continue to focus on improving foodservice and the in-store experience.
Foodservice has been increasing since 2021, when sales reached a record high of $43.2 billion. With the category accounting for 36% of in-store gross margin, store owners have the ability to utilize foodservice to their advantage. Convenience store customers prioritize convenience and quality, so making sure you offer quality food items and healthy options at the right price is the key to setting your store up for success. To learn more about foodservice for your convenience store, read our blog on c-stores shifting focus to foodservice in 2023.
The in-store experience is another piece of the puzzle to ensure continued growth this year. With in-store sales growing, largely due to foodservice, prioritizing your store’s look, layout, cleanliness, product offering, etcetera is key to continuing to grow in-store sales in 2023. A clean, well-lit convenience store is more likely to encourage in-store sales, according to Convenience Store News. Additionally, having a layout that flows well and allows customers to get in and out quickly will draw more convenience customers to your store. To learn more about the in-store experience, view a c-store owner’s guide to the in-store experience.
Hopefully, 2023 will bring in even more growth for store owners and the convenience store industry will experience another great year!