Archives for October 2009

Cruising the Express Lane

Customers in Sandpoint, Idaho crave convenience, but even they were surprised by the speed of service offered at the new Express Lane drive-through convenience store. Express Lane’s founder Adrian Cox was looking to expand his company and found the drive-through concept too tempting to pass up. He described the offering as an appealing and cost-effective

Retailing on Two Wheels

With gas pumps out front, automotive supplies inside and the occasional adjacent lube shop, c-stores are geared toward the driving public. But as more commuters take to bikes for exercise, to save on gas or to support a greener environment, one c-store owner is making bicycles his business. A bike commuter and bike mechanic, Edwin

Legislative Wrap Up for 2009

With the Democrats controlling both houses of Congress and the White House, this year has seen major federal tax and regulatory legislation signed into law that will dramatically impact the tobacco industry. On April 1, the largest tax increase on a single product in the history of the U.S. became law with the federal cigarette

A Certified Success

View From the Top: Certified Oil’s Leadership Team If experience is an accurate indicator of a company’s success, Certified Oil has a bright future. Three members of the company’s senior leadership team have been with the company for more than 30 years, and several others have major oil, grocery and management consulting backgrounds. The leadership

Three Decades of Wisdom and Experience

Chief Financial Officer, Certified Oil I joined Certified Oil in 1975. As a CPA, my background was in auditing and taxation. Being in the gasoline business with Certified over the past 34 years has made me use every bit of knowledge and experience I acquired just to keep up with the fast pace and complexity

Meeting the Demand for Fresh Foods

Americans are more amenable to buying meals at convenience stores, but won’t budge when it comes to quality, price or convenience factors like portability and packaging. That means there’s the potential for some real money in home meal replacement (HMR), but it has to be done well, and in just the right locations. Then there’s

What’s in Store in the Humidor

As if the turbulent economy, rising state taxes and local anti-smoking regulations hadn’t rendered the retail cigar landscape dangerous enough, enter the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which wants to significantly reshape that landscape, but so far hasn’t told anyone—most notably the retailers that will be selling the products—how. Some background: The law granting

A Functional Boost to Confections

You know the truism about Americans wanting more of everything is, indeed, true when we begin demanding more from our candy, gum and mint products than just good taste. As with beverages over the last decade or so, so-called functional snacks are slowly gaining respect in the convenience store channel, as major manufacturers roll products

New Forecourt Moves

Though gas prices have dropped significantly from a year ago, forecourt-driven sales are still a challenge for many convenience stores because people aren’t buying gas as freely as they did several years ago. The reason? Our troubled economy makes it tough for many to afford the long car trips. Fewer trips mean fewer opportunities to

Targeting New Customers

Gaining market share has never been more important than it is today, when a tough economy is forcing customers to hang on to their money longer. This means that c-store retailers seeking new customers need to become aware of what specific groups need in order to improve their marketing strategies. One such group is the

How to Achieve and Maintain ADA Compliance

Ever since the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) went into effect in 1992, it has dramatically improved the lives of disabled individuals by working to make all public places in the U.S. both accessible and hospitable to those with disabilities. But even though the ADA has greatly helped in achieving a better quality of life

Are Your Underground Storage Tanks Safe?

Convenience store operators who don’t know state regulations concerning underground storage tanks (USTs) from a hole in the ground had better learn more about what’s in those holes and what the government is both offering and expecting from them. Federal mandates requiring a significant increase in biofuels production, for example, have spurred an increase in

Cultivating Customers Through Loyalty

Customer Commitment The biggest hurdle some retailers face when implementing a loyalty program is getting customers to notice the many benefits. When Mid-State Petroleum launched its loyalty offering last November company Vice President Tony Perez launched a promotion to give away $10,000 in rewards at each of his locations. New customers received a $5 reward

Vendors Help Prepaid Prosper

Prepaid services are revolutionizing the way customers do business today. From unbanked customers to students and others looking to reduce their outstanding debt, prepaid debit cards and bill pay services offer customers a payment solution without the drawback of monthly interest charges. Retailers agree that choosing a vendor that will work with your chain to

Turning to the RYO Category

Since the onset of the April SCHIP tax increase, tobacco retailers have been turning to puffed or extended tobacco to help customers deal with the skyrocketing costs of cigarettes, especially as more customers are turning to the roll your own (RYO) category in an attempt to save dollars. Republic Tobacco’s Gambler is the market leader

7-Eleven Goes Viral Targeting Younger Consumers

The latest 30-day promotion from 7-Eleven features a Battle of the Bands online music contest geared toward music lovers and younger consumers, complete with live concerts around the U.S., and new guitar-shaped Slurpee and Big Gulp cups. The contest marks the first time Slurpee has sponsored a grassroots music competition with music-enthusiasts from across the

5-Hour Energy

Should your stores carry more energy shot brands, or should they carry more energy shots that sell? Seventy-one percent of all energy shot sales in convenience stores are 5-Hour Energy. In fact, the top four selling energy shot SKUs are all 5-Hour Energy. Do your stores carry all four? Visit booth #4138 for more info.

National Tobacco

Headlines from National: Zig-Zag® Cigar Wraps score three new flavors to its line-up; Mango A Go-Go™, Straight-Up™ and Strawberry-Splash™. Zig-Zag® wraps are boldly flavored for a robust cigar experience. Stoker’s® Moist Snuff releases two new BIG flavors; Long Cut Straight and Mint 12-oz. Stoker’s® – Big Size, Big Value, Big Sales.  

Innovative Candy Concepts

It may be the best new kids candy to come out in years and finally, a candy both kids & Mom’s can agree on! MONSTER GOO! It’s sugar free & made in the USA. Comes with a cool, resealable sports cap.

Krispy Krunchy Foods

Krispy Krunchy Foods will be showing two of their concepts during this year’s NACS show.  The chicken concept gives a franchise look with no franchise fees.  Operators get a week of training at their location and a first class graphics package.  The pizza concept is a pre-built product of high quality designed to take the

Kretek International Inc.

Kretek International Inc., exclusive importer of Djarum brand tobacco products, has introduced new Djarum Filtered Clove Cigars, available in four styles–Classic Black, Vanilla Black, Cherry Black and Special Box. Three of the styles will carry the popular Black brand name with its distinctive red triangle and black package. Djarum Filtered Clove Cigars are packaged in

Welch’s

Welch’s is proud to highlight two new offerings for convenience retail, 100% Blueberry Pomegranate Concord Grape and Black Cherry Concord Grape.  Both flavors on-trend and bring exciting new variety to the single serve juice category.  Stop by today and come taste the great new flavors! 

Van Houtte

Van Houtte will be featuring a wide selection of its gourmet blends including a full-line of fair-trade coffees available in traditional and single-cup format. Both supported with merchandising programs. A variety of hot and cold alternative beverages will be available for sampling including the recently launched iced coffee program. Van Houtte will also be featuring

Old Wisconsin

As the meat snack C-store experts, Old Wisconsin not only offers the largest variety of top-quality products in multiple flavors and sizes, we also supply a wide range of flexible, eye-catching displays and merchandising systems that meet your store’s needs. Our “2 For A Buck” and “Go For 2” Gravity Fed Displays deliver unbeatable value

Sam’s Clubs

Sam’s Clubs newest benefit to the Plus Membership offers more value and simplicity by loading additional savings and values directly on your Membership card.  eValues are matched to a Member’s purchasing patterns. This means a Member’s eValues offers are more related to their needs and preferences.  Visit samsclub.com/evalues for more info.