CHICAGO -- The roller grill, arguably the most conventional, everyday foodservice fixture in convenience stores, remains a bright spot in the c-store food category. The number of roller-grill items is up year over year, as operators continue to expand upon the format and offer more variety.
Technomic's new Q4 2017 C-Store MarketBrief study analyzes its exclusive Consumer Brand Metrics data to reveal the latest consumer preferences for the roller grill. What's driving—and deterring—their purchase of roller-grill fare? Based on what the frequent c-store customer is saying, what can retailers do to boost interest in the roller grill?
Read on to gauge consumer sentiment about roller-grill offerings ...
1. Snacking is a key opportunity
Nearly two-thirds (64%) of c-store consumers who purchase roller-grill items due so for snacking—the highest response given compared to any other daypart or occasion. This suggests that roller-grill purchases are largely driven by cravings and impulse buys. New or unique limited-time offerings (LTOs) on the roller grill could do more to spur purchases for snacks, especially among a younger consumer base.
2. Freshness makes the difference
Want to increase roller-grill purchases? Boost the freshness perception, consumers say. More than half of consumers (53%) call roller-grill items that are "made fresh daily" their top purchase driver, while 41% say that to increase their spend, c-stores must provide roller-grill offerings that have a fresh appearance.
3. Clean it up
Half of the consumers surveyed (50%) say that cleanliness is the top attribute they look for at the roller-grill station. In addition to showcasing variety, flavor and abundant options for snacking, customers expect to see a clean and sanitary area in order to positively impact their perception of the roller grill.