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Snacks, Soft Drinks Among Top C-Store Purchases

Convenience store drink aisle

Roughly 62 percent of convenience store customers report that snacks are predominately purchased on-site, followed by soft drinks at 57 percent, coffee at 37 percent, and prepared food at 26 percent, according to a report from market research firm Intouch Insight. This year’s Convenience Store Trends report surveyed over 1,200 customers across 10 major retailers.

Consumer perception of convenience stores is gradually shifting with more than half of surveyed consumers believing that made-to-order food provides good value for their money.

“One significant trend reshaping the industry is the growth in food options. No longer limited to roller grill hotdogs and stale coffee, C-stores now offer restaurant-quality food, attracting a wider and more diverse customer base,” according to Intouch Insight.

Additionally, chains across the country have been investing in their coffee offerings. The report noted that retailers can attract coffee lovers, boost foot traffic, and facilitate customer loyalty by focusing on a specialty selection.

According to the report, gasoline purchases at convenience stores reign supreme as part of roughly 82 percent of visits. But as the automotive landscape evolves due to electric vehicle growth, convenience stores should capitalize on emerging opportunities, particularly with food.

“As more consumers drive EVs, the convenience of having charging facilities will become a significant factor in their choice of retail locations. This can increase foot traffic and lead to additional sales in-store while customers wait for their vehicles to charge,” reported Intouch Insight.