The Evolution Of The Modern C-Store

Convenience stores have been around for many years, but they have undergone a significant transformation in the last few decades. They are nearly unrecognizable from the humble corner stores we once knew. These days, c-stores are places where you can shop for almost anything you can imagine, from groceries to hot food, merchandise, and much more. 

So what factors caused this evolution? Here are a few ways the modern convenience store has changed and how store owners can keep up with the changing tide. 

One-Stop-Shop For Everything 

Gone are the days when convenience stores were a place to buy just the essentials. Even the term c-store means something different than it did in the past. Where once it was a small store in town that had the basics, today, you can get almost anything you can imagine at your local convenience store. One of the reasons c-stores are more popular than ever is because of the addition of items such as hot, grab-and-go food. This is a big seller for convenience stores. 

While convenience stores were once limited to the basics in food choices, customers can now find a huge variety of foods, from hot sandwiches to breakfast food, snacks, and much more. Many c-stores even have chain restaurants inside them, such as Subway or Cinnabon. 

As the modern convenience store grows, so do the options for stocking merchandise. More options than ever exist for unique displays that take advantage of foot traffic through the store. Customers no longer have to stroll the aisles to see what merchandise is available; instead, store owners can target incoming customers by putting out strategic displays. 

A Name With a Cult Following 

While most convenience stores continue to be small, some have become huge brand names. And some have large followings usually reserved for theme parks. There are even some people who make it their goal to visit every c-store of a particular brand. These regional or even national name recognitions have found a key niche with their products and merchandise. They offer one-of-a-kind eatery stations and displays that get customers into the store because they market themselves not just as a convenience store but as an experience. 

Solid Ways To Increase Customer Purchases 

So with all these big changes in what the modern c-store offers and how it markets to customers, what can store owners do? 

There are a few that can be done with the goal of getting customers through the door. This could be providing unique sales and discounts, with the intent of increasing foot traffic. These, along with displays placed at key points throughout the store, will improve sales.

Modern store owners also have to think about providing something different from the competition. This could be in the food arena or in other ways, such as offering a selection of local beers other convenience stores don't have in stock. 

Of course, with more merchandise comes the need for new storage options. Fresh food needs to be kept cold or warm, ready-to-go options need to be in convenient locations for customers to grab, and other options require visible eye-catching displays.

Randal Is The Best Choice For C-Store Needs

In business for over 40 years, Randal Retail Group knows how to work as a part of your business team. With the Randal Program, custom designs, planning, and execution can be completed for all your c-stores that are being built, even across state lines. We can also store all your millwork in our warehouse, shipping out as each store is ready for installation. Ensuring that you only have to deal with one project manager so you can concentrate on other things to get for the grand opening events. 

Curious to learn some tips and tricks on how retail design can impact sales? Click below to get started.

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