The latest industry numbers are deceptively rosy.
The convenience-store channel netted its 15th straight year of record in-store sales and its fourth straight year of more than $10 billion in pretax profits. Total sales increased 9.3% to $601.1 billion, and pretax profit increased 1.6% to $10.4 billion. Inside sales were up 1.7% to $237.0 billion, while fuel sales reached $364.1 billion—a 14.9% increase over 2016.
At the same time, fuel consumption struggled, store traffic stumbled and competition heated up from all corners of the retailing universe.
Here, CSP looks at 2017's sales data and where the c-store channel is headed nearly half way into 2018.