In a world where technology advances never stop, consumer expectations are higher than ever. And convenience stores have been slow to get in the game—but retailers are working to change that. Your target shoppers support retail outlets that carry the products they want, at a price they deem fair—with occasional rewards for their loyalty—along with efficient service. And don’t forget to support the causes they admire.
The rapid growth of c-store prepared foods continues to change the industry. Foodservice is now the largest contributor of in-store gross profit, and the future looks bright. But with growth often comes challenges, and a major one is labor. Retailers must focus on finding, training and retaining foodservice workers who think like a restaurant team. Other hurdles include serving the palates of Gen Z with bold flavors and unique concepts while meeting the preferences of the core millennial customer, and expanding menu choices for snacking, lunch and dinner.
The nicotine category has been unsettled and unpredictable for several years, with no clear path ahead. Can we expect more flavor bans and changes in tobacco purchasing age? Retailers are learning how to deal with supplier consolidations, and new products continue to put pressure on traditional combustible tobacco. Still, unit sales of cigars, snus and electronic smoking devices continue to grow even as cigarettes slip.
Outlook is the convenience retailing industry’s premier, invitation-only event where you’ll find the right decision makers in the room. You’ll have the opportunity to establish key partnerships with executives that can ultimately increase your market share.
Innovation is positioning the beverage category for the future. As the beverage set in our stores evolves, retailers also face differing definitions of “healthy.” Whether you manage alcohol, nonalcohol or both, the challenges of selecting the right assortment amid shifts in consumer preferences seem to grow every year. If only your space could grow at the same pace! CSP’s Cold Vault Forum offers category managers the latest in beverage trends and who's drinking what, presented by subject matter experts.