applauding the qt culture

Spend just a few minutes inside a QuikTrip convenience store and one thing becomes immediately clear: there seems to be a vibrant energy that is shared between customers and employees. This is no accident. The privately held Tulsa, Okla.-based chain has dedicatedvirtually all of its 49 years to cultivating this bond between customers and employees.

Can’t Take the Trip Without a Road Map!

Running Convenience Stores is a long and exciting journey, albeit fraught with Pot Holes, Winding Roads and Stormy Weather. If you’ll stay the course, you will still find that a small pot of gold awaits you!More… So tell me, what other long, rugged and expensive Trip would you make without using a “Road Map”?

Great Timing = Great Sales

Over the years, I’ve found that when I’ve matched the right product with the right occasion, I’ve been able to create increased sales with a much higher gross profit %. Not nearly as difficult as it sounds! Here’s an example: we place wool hats and brown jersey gloves on the counter, directly in front of

The Times They are a Changin’

So wrote the poet Bob Dylan! You may very well have a nice, clean, well merchandised Convenience Store and still not be doing the amount of business required. Just in case you missed the memo, the days of depending on Customers automatically coming to your nice store are over! Like Hansel and Gretel, the most

the evolution of cash management

A CSD Staff Report The old saying goes, “A good bartenderwith questionable ethics will own yourbar in five years.” Tidel Engineering, a subsidiary of Sentinel Technologies Inc.,can’t help convenience store owners findgood employees, but you can bet your bottom dollar it will help keep your cash safe. That’s because Tidel has been at theforefront of

dispensing dollars

Tetley Harris enhances foodservice programs with a wealth of “better for you” beverages. Foodservice continues to grow in importance in the convenience store channel. The foodservice category—which consists of food prepared on site, made-toorder sandwiches, as well as hot foods thatinclude hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza, inaddition to hot and cold dispensed beverages—accounts for 11.9%

united front

For Sunny Singh, general manager of retail operations forGardena, Calif.-based United Oil, good business sense justruns through his veins. Not only does he possess a strong business acumen, he's also intimately aware of the intricacies necessary to succeed in the highly competitive convenience storeindustry. Singh, who hails from Punjab, India, began working in the familybusinesses,

partnering for perfection

CSD acknowledges the suppliers that retailers themselves said were partners in growing their businesses. • 2007 CSD READER’S CHOICE AWARDS • PACKAGED BEVERAGES NINETY-TWO KEY DECISIONS MAKERSfor 87 chains reported $2.1 billionin sales for the entire packaged beverage category, which includes carbonated soft drinks (CSDs), juices andteas. As may be expected, the top sellersthis year

the debate over minimum wage

IN JANUARY, THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVESvoted on something that had been set in stone for over adecade. They voted in overwhelming numbers toapprove an increase in the federal minimum wage—adecision that could not only affect millions of c-storeemployees, but also their employers as well. Cause for a RaiseThe past decade has been the longest stretch

elevating the customer experience

Innovation, commitment to service is the hallmark of the Parker business strategy. The Parker Cos. is a dynamicoperation with interests inreal estate, building retail centers and offices, the storagebusiness (Urban Attic), Spin Citylaundry, Parker’s Market UrbanGourmet and, of course, Parker’sConvenience Stores. The Savannah, Ga.-based company, which is also a BP andChevron jobber, is owned and

a partner you can trust

Finding the right supplier partners is crucial to convenience store retailers that is only enhanced in this era ofultra competitiveness. That's why Convenience Store Decisions set out to identify the suppliers and manufacturersretailers say are doing the best job meeting their needs as partof our second annual Reader's Choice Awards. The awards are based on

daypart dining

While lunch is a proven daypart for convenience stores, truly capturing customers means creating morning and dinner offers. Three retailers share their secrets to capturing dining dollars without cannibalizing existing lunch sales. FRIENDSHIP FOODS hasmade itself a food destination thanks to strong branded programs. Sixteen of the company’s 25 stores offer some form offoodservice, be

making the most at the car wash

Discounting and sacrificing fuel margins may not be the most effective way to build incremental sales. After more than 30 years inthe retail car wash business,Paul Vercollone qualifies as anexpert on the subject of selling car washes to the motoring public. Andwith his many years of experience,Vercollone has a message to those operators sacrificing fuel

five questions with ez marts sonja hubbard

What do you see as thegreatest opportunity in the convenience retailing businessat present?Convenience. It's what we whatwe sell and what customerswant. People are more pressedfor time than ever so convenience is more important thanever. What an opportunity. What are you doing at E-ZMart to attract female/new shoppers? We have taken down most of thewindow clutter

convenience store shoppers want convenience

A comprehensive new study by Meyers Research Center (MRC) finds that convenience store shoppers are seeking cold beverages,friendly employees and know what they want before they get through the door. The findings are part of Meyers' Convenience StoreClose-Up Wave Six, which takes a look at behavior, attitudes and decision-making patterns of c-store shoppers in the

Let's Play Some Defense!

It’s a well know Sports adage that you can’t be a stand out winner without being strong on defense. The very same holds true for the Convenience Store Business. Viewing Security Tapes from your stores Video System is one excellent way of practicing “Strong Defense” (for those that don’t have Security Cameras, this very same

tobacco 2007 issues insightsimplications from lessons learned in 2006

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gate petroleum selects boomi

Jacksonville, Fla.-based Gate Petroleum Co. has selected the Boomi Visual Integration Platform to meet the company’s current business-to-business integration software needs as well as emerging application integration requirements. “We evaluated our technology infrastructure and realized we could significantly improve business processes if we pulled together information from standalone applications and connect directly with our trading

winwin loyalty propositions

While some experts say a rewards program that also reduces credit card fees is too good to be true, Wawa and Wesco beg to differ. Creating a loyal customer base hasalways been a concern for retailers. But more recently, highinterchange rates on Visa andMasterCard purchases have been at theforefront of retailers’ minds. While theywant to

wholesale change

With all of the competitionconvenience store retailers arefacing these days, they can take some comfort that they are not going atit alone. Wholesalers and suppliershave a vested interest in their success.Quite simply, when retailers succeed,the folks that produce and supply theirproducts also succeed. Of the three primary modes of storedistribution—wholesalers, direct storedelivery (DSD) and self-distribution—convenience

mst taxation myth vs reality

Ad valorem state taxation maintains a growing and competitive marketplace for moist smokeless tobacco. by Joseph R. Augustus, Senior Vice President of External Affairs for Swisher International Inc. Tobacco Taxation Counterpoint — This is the second of a two-part series on smokeless tobacco taxation.Part one ran in the Dec. 2006 issue of Convenience Store Decisions.

Top 10 Wholesalers

Company Name McLane Company Inc. States of Operation All states, every zipcode # of C-stores Distributed To 30,000+ Top C-Store Accounts 7-Eleven, Chevron, The Pantry, Hess, Holiday Companys, Exxon Mobil, BP, Sunoco, Mapco, Murphy USA Est. 2006 Sales $21 billion 2005 Sales $19.5 billion Web Site www.mclaneco.com Contact person Steve Brady, Director of Business Development,

protecting tobacco

The 1998 Master Settlement Agreement continues toimpact tobacco sales. Since the agreement went intoeffect almost a decade ago, tobacco retailers continue to be shackled by heavy regulations and constantly increasingtaxes. While taxation is hurting convenience store retailers andtobacco manufacturers by making products more expensive topurchase, regulation is the force that is really bringingheadaches to an

sweet profits

There’s good news and bad news for conveniencestore marketers concerned that other retail channels arecannibalizing their candy sales. A Dechert-Hampe &Co. report on candy found that confectionery sales atnontraditional outlets are on the rise, but, unlike some recentreports, these sales are not coming at the expense of convenience stores sales. Ray Jones, managing director of

success runs in the family

Piedmont Petroleum and its Corner Mart stores keep customers loyal by keeping things simple. Different companies havedifferent ideas of what itmeans to be at their best. Tosome, it means being the biggest in the market. To others, itcould mean having the highest sales.However, to Kenneth Cosgrove andhis family, owners of the PiedmontPetroleum Corp. and Corner

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