Understanding Customer Behavior

Every retailer spends a good portion of his day trying to figure out how best to serve his customers. But frankly, customers and their motivations can throw even the best retailers for a loop. By John Lofstock, Editor. “The customer is always right” is a mantra that convenience store owners hear over and over again.


Serving Up Satisfaction

Eight service tips for effectively handling customer complaints at retail. By John Lofstock, Editor. A lot of retail best—and worst—practices can be found simply by observing what others are doing. Spirit Airlines recently flew into a big public relations disaster. Sticking to a no-refunds policy, the airline refused to refund the airfare of a passenger


Little Ferry 7-Eleven Aids Storm Victims

Little Ferry, N.J. convenience store meets customer needs despite power outage. In Hurricane Sandy’s wake, the 7-Eleven on Main and Liberty Streets in Little Ferry, N.J. found itself unexpectedly open to storm-battered shoppers on Tuesday, despite a lack of power, the Star-Ledger reported. Initially, the store planned to open its doors just long enough for


Maverik Hosts Zombie Runs

Local Idaho residents run to raise money for vaccinations and a local community pool. In time for Halloween, two Maverik Convenience Stores in Idaho towns helped fundraise while engaging the community in exercise and Halloween fun this past weekend with two Zombie 5K races.  In Rupert, Idaho, on Sunday Oct. 27 the Maverik Service Station


Social Media Engagement Drives Sales, Study Reveals

Research from LoyaltyOne, Northwestern and Ivey Business School demonstrates up to 30% increase in purchase behavior from social media participants. Research released by LoyaltyOne and two leading North American academic institutions provides empirical proof that social media interaction between a customer and a brand drives immediate and long-term sales increases. The research constitutes a social

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Kum & Go To Invest $90 Million In Eco-Friendly Stores

Some 20-25 new stores planned for the Colorado Springs and Pikes Peak area within five years. Kum & Go is celebrating its grand opening in Colorado Springs and has plans to invest $90 million in building a total of 20-25 new stores in the Colorado Springs and Pikes Peak region of the Centennial State within


Financing Acquisitions and Upgrades

Changes in the IRS tax code will impact how operators can expense capital improvements. By Mark Battersby, Contributing Editor. In an effort to resolve the controversy over whether certain expenditures made by a convenience store chain, franchise or independent fuel marketer are currently deductible as repair expenses, or whether they must be capitalized and deducted


MAPCO Express Chooses PeopleAnswers

MAPCO Express looks to improve quality of hires and employee retention with the PeopleAnswers HR solution. MAPCO Express and PeopleAnswers have signed a three-year software licensing agreement where the convenience store chain will use the PeopleAnswers HR solution to assist in selecting and hiring corporate positions and store-level staff. “When customers visit a MAPCO store,

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CITGO Awards Hands for Hillcrest Grants

“We look forward to the positive results that the program will generate for the benefit of our neighbors,” says CITGO spokesperson. CITGO Petroleum Corp. and its Corpus Christi refinery have announced the recipients of $500,000 worth of grants under the first year of the company’s Hands for Hillcrest program. The initiative is aimed at supporting


Thorntons Celebrates Humanitarian Day 2012

Through a partnership with Projects With Purpose, Thorntons’ employees volunteer to help Catholic Charities of Louisville and Henryville tornado victims. As part of its ongoing community giving program, Thorntons Inc. employees will be participating in the company’s annual volunteer Humanitarian Day on Sunday, Nov. 11.  This year’s focus is two-fold on behalf of both downtown


Wawa Celebrates 20th Anniversary of ESOP

During National Employee Ownership Month, Wawa celebrates 35 years of sharing ownership. Wawa Inc., this month, is celebrating its commitment to employee ownership through a variety of meaningful activities during October’s National Employee Ownership Month. 2012 is a milestone year for Wawa, marking 35 years since it began sharing ownership with its associates and 20


Fresh-Brewed 7-Election Poll Results

Obama maintains lead in 7-Eleven coffee cup poll, but cup counts shift in some swing states after first debate. There are 14 days left to vote in 7-Election, 7-Eleven’s presidential coffee cup poll. Before the first debate, President Barack Obama had maintained a steady 20-point lead over Republican challenger Mitt Romney, through the first four


Orion Food Systems Honored by Soldier’s Special Request

Orion goes to great lengths to ship pizzas, calzones, Philly Steak Stuffed Baguettes, BBQ Beef Stuffed Baguettes and cheeseburgers to an Air Force base in Afghanistan after receiving a soldier’s request. Of all the recognition and honors Orion Food Systems has received for the last 30 years, none have meant more than the request they


Pilot Flying J Surpasses 650 Stores In North America

New locations feature expanded foodservice, premium coffee and the MyRewards loyalty program. Pilot Flying J recently opened its 650th and 651st locations in North America. The 650th store, a Pilot Travel Center in Von Ormy, Texas, opened on Oct. 15 and features full amenities for professional drivers, area residents and the motoring public. Today, Oct.


Team Oil Celebrates 10 Years Of Evolution

What started as a two-man operation has grown into a successful business venture with a team of 35 employees.   After 10 years of construction, updates and additions—starting with the opening of the 40-foot Team Oil Travel Center’s Liquor Store on Sept. 20, 2002—Eric and Tony Huppert are looking back at the changes they have


Parker’s Debuts New Location

Garden City, Ga. site opens for business. Parker’s has opened a new state-of-the-art store in Garden City, Ga. in response to customer demand. The 28th Parker’s location, located at 4219 Augusta Rd., features discounted gasoline as well as nearly 4,000 square feet of retail space. Like all other Parker’s retail locations, the Garden City store


Dealing Behind the Scenes

Open Pantry’s Robert Buhler opens up about the  company’s future, missed opportunities and the financial wisdom offered by his board of directors. By John Lofstock, Editor. To make your mark in the convenience store industry, you are either growing the business or waiting for the rest of the industry to pass you by. Growth can


NRF Says Revised Swipe Settlement Still Unacceptable

“The settlement still does virtually nothing to protect retailers or their customers from the abuses of the card industry, and it attempts to silence any objections for years to come,” says NRF. The National Retail Federation (NRF) said a revised antitrust settlement filed in federal court Friday, Oct. 19, scarcely begins to address retailers’ concerns


Murphy Oil Corp. Plans Murphy USA Spinoff

“Separating these two businesses will allow each to unlock its own potential for growth,” says chairman of the board. Murphy Oil Corp.’s Board of Directors has approved a plan to spin off to its stockholders its U.S. downstream subsidiary, Murphy Oil USA Inc., into an independent and separately traded company. The corporation has also authorized


Finding Your Niche in the Hispanic Market

Specifying your target customer in the diverse Hispanic demographic can help food sales soar at retail. By Howard Riell, Associate Editor. The first rule of marketing for the average Hispanic consumer is understanding that there is no such thing as the average Hispanic consumer. The Hispanic consumer spans a diverse demographic composed of many niche


Northern Exposure

By combining the rich experience of Shell Oil with family-owned ingenuity, truenorth convenience stores is poised for a breakout year. By: John Lofstock. There aren’t too many 93-year-old oil companies that have enjoyed decades of success, but have managed to keep a low profile. But the winds of change are blowing at Truenorth Energy LLC


The Economics of Energy Efficiency

Convenience stores and many other retail segments have been able to slash operating costs with LED lighting and other equipment upgrades. By Erin Rigik, Associate Editor. Convenience store chains big and small are finding ways to save money while improving the store experience for customers with energy efficient technologies. When Wawa Inc. was searching for

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Worth The ‘Hassel’

Cumberland Farms turns a unique theft problem into a marketing campaign on its social media sites. By Megan Wilkinson, Assistant Editor Cumberland Farms stores launched a promotion of its iced coffee featuring David Hasselhoff as its spokesman last month, and it garnered instant attention from its customers…maybe too much attention. The chain decided to place

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Credit Card Security And PCI: Where Do We Go From Here?

When it comes to data security, all retailers need to be prepared for the worst scenario, but that can’t happen if they aren’t aware of PCI requirements and the severe consequences that can result from a data breach. By John Lofstock, Editor When security breaches make the news, the typical victims are retailing giants, such


Managing Today’s Retail Workforce

As major shifts in the economy have created unparalleled effects on the labor market, CSD has partnered with Humetrics to help c-store operators benchmark their hiring practices and employee costs. By Mel Kleiman, Contributing Editor. In an ongoing effort to support the convenience store and petroleum industry’s forecasting and planning responsibilities, Convenience Store Decisions and