“A craveable purchase is something that is borne out of an unplanned or impulse occasion, so you have to think about options carefully and strategically when you're thinking about innovating for that,” Byrne said. Questions to ask when building a menu: Who are your customers? What do they want in foodservice? Who are your competitors, and do they have a popular product you can “steal” and do better?

Byrne encourages retailers to think about what the impulse occasion looks or feels like. The Technomic c-store survey captures data from more than 40 chains showing what customers want. Is it a snack item? Is it sweet, or is it salty?

“These are things that I think a retailer would want to know about their own customer base,” he said.

A recent Family Express shopper said, “I love the soft sugar cookies [that] are iced and in individual wrappers. I also love the square doughnuts. I can only get these food items at Family Express.”