7-Eleven visits have outpaced pre-pandemic levels, according to a study from Placer.ai. The company’s strong 2021 performance makes for a tough year-over-year comparison, but overall level of year-over-three-year visit growth during most weeks since October is “remarkable,” the report claimed.
From October to January, year-over-three-year visits were up the highest during the week of Dec. 19, at 11.7%, according to Placer.ai. Visits were only down one week, dropping 0.2% the week of Nov. 28. Year-over-year visits, however, were not so positive, with only three weeks of growth from October to January.
Weekly Visits to 7-Eleven, Oct 2022 to Jan 2023
One of 7-Eleven’s pushes for growth over the last few years has been its “Evolution” stores, which offer in-store restaurants, premium products like cigars, craft beers and wine cellars. The first Evolution store was opened in Dallas in 2019, and the chain has added more locations in Texas, New York, Washington, D.C., Virginia and San Diego.
In 2021, the chain opened its first dining drive-thru, where customers can grab a Slurpee or a Laredo Taco on the go. In addition, the chain has expanded its food offerings in stores across the country.
7‑Eleven's Evolution Store concept continues to set a benchmark for convenience retailing, serving as an experiential testing ground for customers to try the brand's latest products and innovations.
“The customer is getting the convenience they expect from 7‑Eleven—coupled with a delicious restaurant-quality dining option and unique and innovative beverages,” said Molly Long, vice president of store evolution and design. “These lab stores give us an opportunity to test, learn and scale successes into our new store standards which ultimately allows us to continuously improve the experience for all our customers.”
While all Evolution Stores include a restaurant concept, no two locations are exactly alike as the retailer continues to tweak the design and product mix based on customer feedback and shopping habits.
Furthermore, when comparing the median household incomes (HHIs) of the chain’s 2022 fourth quarter true trade areas with statewide baselines in six states, the median HHI of the c-stores’ trade areas was significantly lower than the statewide median, said Placer.ai. This means that 7-Eleven’s target audiences tended to be less affluent.
- 7-Eleven is No. 1 on CSP’s 2022 Top 202 ranking of the largest U.S. c-store chains by number of company-owned retail outlets.
7-Eleven operates, franchises or licenses more than 72,800 convenience stores in 17 countries and regions, including about 13,000 in the United States, including about 9,500 under the 7-Eleven banner, around 3,800 under the Speedway banner and about 500 under the Stripes flag, as well as the Laredo Taco Company and Raise the Roost Chicken and Biscuits brands.
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