These consumers are most likely to plan their c-store visits ahead of time, visit during the morning daypart and buy regular hot coffee. Loyalty programs that reward frequent purchases could prove potent, so take a page from Starbucks with an app that makes the morning coffee buy more convenient.
Northeasterners are also most likely to buy made-to-order food at c-stores. The region is rich with sophisticated c-store foodservice players, including Swiss Farms, which has been expanding its lineup in recent months.
Justin Vignola, director of fresh food for the Broomall, Pa.-based chain, says Northeasterners want customizable options, which is why the chain is launching a mix-and-match meal lineup in early 2017 with a choice of entree proteins and sides.
“Customers are not only looking for a fresh meal fast—they also want choices to reflect the healthier side, but still taste great too,” he says.