Convenience stores have been stealing food share away from QSRs. Our data shows a slow and steady increase in convenience food share, aligned to a similarly slow decrease in share against the QSR category (convenience share is up +3pts from 2019). This could be the case due to quicker meal prep time and variety of food options at convenience locations.
Gas stations with made-to-order menus are shown to have higher walk-in rates than those with ‘standard’ snack options
The convenience store experience has evolved, and brands that have upgraded their food options benefit from higher walk-in rates compared to those with a more traditional offering. With elevated food options, however, comes share of stomach competition with QSRs.
Customer penetration of mobile ordering has been growing since well before COVID
Customers want quick – whether that comes to meal preparation, or placing an order in the first place. To that end, customers who used mobile ordering at convenience, QSR, or FSR retailers has risen over the last three years – up to 1.1% from 0.5% in Q1 2019. Brands who haven’t taken advantage of this purchase channel fail to capture the full spend potential of their customers.
What does this mean for you?
A couple of things...Convenience stores are positioned well to continue stealing share, as long as online ordering and a variety of menu options are available to consumers. That said, these increases in share of trip and share of stomach need to be defended – especially considering that inflation has sent consumer choice in many different directions. Convenience stores need to solidify loyalty before QSRs lure lost consumers back.
Leveraging Cardlytics digital offers can help turn new and existing customers into long-term loyalists at a time when price efficiency is on everyone’s mind.
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