The Survey

Convenience Store Products’ inaugural retailer survey reveals product trends and category strategies across the c-store landscape

Category Growth by Region

Retailers across all regions of the country recognize one thing: Foodservice is on the rise. How will other categories shape up in the year to come?

Foodservice and snacks are hot across the board. Putting those two categories aside, there is a bit of differentiation across the United States in terms of retailers’ category sales expectations for the coming year. Here's a sampling of how the different regions shaped up.

NORTHEAST

  • 58% of respondents in the Northeast indicated they expect E-CIGARETTE sales to be up in 2016.
  • 67% of respondents in the Northeast indicated they expect COMBUSTIBLE CIGARETTE AND CIGAR sales to be down in 2016.

SOUTH

  • 20% of respondents in the South indicated they expect sales of HEALTH AND BEAUTY PRODUCTS to be down in 2016.
  • 41% of respondents in the South indicated they expect ALCOHOL sales to be up in 2016.

MIDWEST

  • 64% of respondents in the Midwest indicated they expect FOODSERVICE sales to be up in 2016.
  • 23% of respondents in the Midwest indicated they expect GUM sales to be down in 2016.

WEST

  • 62% of respondents in the West indicated they expect sales of PACKAGED SNACKS to be up in 2016.
  • 45% of respondents in the West indicated they expect sales of PACKAGED CARBONATED SOFT DRINKS to be down in 2016.

Category Growth Potential*

Category Northeast South Midwest West
Foodservice 65% 74% 64% 58%
Packaged snacks 58% 58% 50% 62%
E-cigarettes 58% 39% 32% 38%
Other vaping devices 54% 34% 39% 38%
Hot dispensed beverages 39% 33% 27% 24%
Alcohol beverages 31% 41% 34% 36%
Packaged beverages (excluding CSDs) 31% 35% 18% 40%
Candy 27% 46% 34% 49%
Cold/frozen dispensed beverage 42% 39% 39% 36%
General merchandise (excluding HBC) 27% 33% 21% 18%
HBC 23% 13% 11% 9%
Packaged CSDs 19% 35% 30% 24%
Other tobacco products 19% 32% 25% 27%
Cigarettes/cigars 12% 32% 14% 9%
Gum 12% 21% 9% 13%

* Percentage of retailers by region who expect growth in each category in the following year


Making Changes

Some of the most drastic product or category changes called out by retailers:

  • “We added craft-beer open-air coolers as well as coolers for dairy/juice to free up the vault for more water, isotonics  [and] energy-enhanced drinks.” —Retailer located in the South
  • “A complete remerchandising and product selection in every store. We worked with our grocery wholesaler to analyze scan data and make intelligent decisions on product selection and placement." —Retailer located in the South
  • “We have added quite a few lines of Hispanic items, from food to ice cream to HBC. Many of our stores are in highly Hispanic areas.” —Retailer located in the West