Food

Wooing Customers To Convenience Stores

Improving food service options at grocery and convenience stores is paying off.

Attracting traditional restaurant and burger joint customers to cstores has been a difficult challenge given the quality of food and consistency.  However, as more and more grocery players get in the game of offering fresh prepared foods and baked goods, customer attitudes are spending habits are changing.

Sheets, a chain of 487 convenience stores and gas stations rolled out barista stations that offer fruit smoothies and coffee drinks.  Wawa cstores have more than 650 convenience stores with counters that make items from french onion soup to custom-ordered sandwiches. They aim to compete with fast-casual chains like Panera Bread Co. in terms of quality, but at fast-food prices.

Perhaps the most surprising statistic that shows the opportunity is from Whole Foods.  The niche upscale grocery stores reported that their sales of prepared foods and baked goods more than doubled to $2.7 billion in fiscal 2014.  As everyone fights for share of stomach, one can’t help but wonder if the magic behind all of this is simply providing convenience to the customer with something really good to eat.

I always arrived home early when I knew something was there that I really liked to eat.