In the face of pandemic-related challenges to the fuel market, convenience-store retailers have good reason to refine their sales strategies; with many consumers still working, eating and shopping at home when possible, gas sales are consequently at a low. And while retailers can’t control the way demand waxes and wanes, they can control the number one lever that determine their fuel profit and their pole sign price.
Fuel sales drive profits across categories
Even as consumers purchase less gasoline, paying for fuel remains the No. 1 reason they enter the c-store, and fuel customer conversion is up from earlier this year, according to Technomic’s Q3 2020 C-Store Consumer MarketBrief. In addition, an increasing volume of commuters on the road may indicate increasing demand for fuel in the months ahead, with the same Technomic report finding that 60% of consumers who commuted before the pandemic are now traveling to and from work again—a 19% increase from earlier in the pandemic.
Price reigns supreme, but is losing its edge
Consumers may consider a number of priorities when choosing whose gas to buy—gas type and quality, loyalty programs and mobile payment options among them. A 2019 report from NACS suggests that while price remains the number one factor consumers consider when buying gas, 41% of consumers do not consider it to be the main factor when they consider where to buy their gas. In other words, offering the cheapest fuel is no longer the driver it once was for volume and site profitability, and retailers need to adjust to these changes accordingly.
Of course, retailers need to keep their margins in mind, too. This means retailers must consider multiple dynamic factors as they narrow down the best price for their fuel, including their cost of product and competitors’ prices to best maximize profits.
Fortunately, c-store retailers can turn to the experts for timesaving, margin-boosting solutions. EdgePetrol’s fuel pricing software enables retailers to optimize their pricing strategy across their entire portfolio. Performance reporting comes in real time, allowing retailers to consult up-to-date insights into each of their location’s volumes, margins and profits with no manual entry.
In addition, EdgePetrol technologies enable retailers to connect to point-of-sale systems, cost prices and underground storage tanks remotely, allowing them to receive data insights and to confirm that on-site prices are changed correctly—no expensive pole sign hardware required. Plus, retailers can see how the current weighting of fuel in tanks informs cost and by identifying overhead costs from credit cards to make gross and net margins distinct.
In keeping fuel prices competitive and margins high, EdgePetrol solutions provide a proven path to success—some customers seeing their fuel profits increase by as much as 18%. To learn more, visit edgepetrol.com.
This post is sponsored by EdgePetrol