C-stores thrive on last minute

Retailers can target impulsive socialising

Many nights in are planned last minute, which spells opportunity for c-stores

UNLIKE shoppers heading to one of the ‘big four’ supermarkets for a weekly shop, c-store customers tend to be led by last minute purchases.

This can prove a valuable opportunity when it comes to the big night in, according to Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP).

Amy Burgess, senior trade communications manager at CCEP, said that “for many consumers, nights in are being treated as more of an occasion and as such, people socialising at home is a growing opportunity for retailers.

“These nights are often planned at the last minute, and this can make convenience stores a go-to stop for shoppers making impulse buys for their evening ahead.

“Soft drinks are a big opportunity for retailers to cater to those having nights at home, particularly over the summer months.

“Sharing formats like 2L PET bottles of Coca-Cola zero sugar and multipack cans of Fanta and Sprite Zero are popular choices for these occasions, so making sure shelves are stocked up can help retailers make the most of the opportunity.”

Soft drinks are key to the big night in

And although the weather so far this summer has been a bit hit and miss, if the sun does appear then it can bring further big night in opportunities.

“Periods of warmer weather can be the catalyst behind growth.

“Last summer, soft drink sales grew by between six and 8% during the warm weather,” explained Burgess.

“Retailers should also proactively look ahead and see which notable summer sport, TV moments or events are coming up, and it may be worth putting together displays themed around these events in order to leverage the high level of interest that can be generated ahead of these occasions.”

Highlighting the display prominently in the shop can play a role in encouraging consumers to plan a spontaneous summer night in.

And to ensure that it is c-stores, not supermarkets, that consumers turn to for their big night in, Burgess said that eye-catching displays were key.

“Highlighting the display prominently in the shop can play a role in encouraging consumers to plan a spontaneous summer night in, leading to incremental growth.

“Creating eye-catching displays can help increase sales, especially impulse buys.”