As our industry changes and evolves with new opportunities and challenges, so must retailers and those who serve them. Keeping up with new trends, emerging demographics, transitioning resources and technological advances requires continued engagement with industry leaders and organizations that are mapping how the future is affecting the convenience store industry.
Amazon, Walmart, Dollar General- every day brings a new retailer into the convenience store environment. With each new entry, the market gets tighter and convenience retailers are forced to contend with competitors who have higher volume discounts, greater vendor negotiability, larger labor pools with enticing benefits, and more. Convenience stores need to compete with technology upgrades, increased customer service, niche marketing and product variety, and advertising that highlights unique offerings.
Online shopping has increased the demand for a fast checkout experience in-store as well. Making sure your staff can handle fluctuating store customer volume, getting the most from each transaction, providing a personalized experience, and having advanced point-of-sale technology is important to keeping things running smoothly. A robust economy has made labor a luxury. With greater opportunities in expanding industries outside the convenience store market, retailers need to begin thinking of different ways to appeal to quality personnel- hiring and retaining motivated employees and turning the $7 an hour team member into a $15 an hour team member.
Studies show 80 percent of shoppers say they’re more likely to shop in a store that provides a customized experience for them. Three-fourths say they’d enjoy checkout more if they received personalized coupons at checkout.
Targeted store loyalty programs allow retailers to deliver personalized offers via mobile app and/or at the point of sale during checkout. You can also personalize offers outside the in-store experience. By understanding how a customer shops, you can send emails, promotions, texts and more that advertise specials that appeal to them directly from previous shopping experiences and purchases.
Pinnacle continues to look ahead and the opportunities that the future presents- both for the convenience store industry and our company, but also to the technological advances and abilities that are to come. We are excited to be at the lead in innovation and how our industry engages with their customers, protects their customers and continues to be the center of community now and into the future.