Millennials are using convenience stores to buy essentials
By NACS Online
Millennials like convenience stores, fueling foodservice innovation and mobile payments, among other things. Now, Chase.com reports that the younger generation is turning to convenience stores for grocery shopping.
Twenty-four-year-old Benjamin Sturm often stops by his local Stewart’s Shops to pick up cheese, bread and milk. “I only go to the grocery store for specialty items or things that Stewart’s doesn’t carry,” he said. “I don’t like to put the wear-and-tear on my car if I don’t have to. So, I usually go for gas on the way home, and get all the things I need in one stop.”
According to research from the NPD Group, convenience stores grabbed 11% of millennial food and drink stops in 2014, up sharply from close to 8% in 2006. This age group is more likely to stop and pick up items—especially fresh prepared food—at gas stations and convenience stores than any other age group.
“They are less likely to shop for staple ingredients and more likely to shop for an immediate meal. Combine that with the rise of cheap gas, and we will see more men being open to grocery shopping at convenience stores as they fuel up,” said Patricia Martin, who writes about the consumer culture.
This has fueled record sales at convenience stores. “Fresh food and fresh, prepared foods are a real growth category for us,” said Kyle Sloan, a merchandise manager for Love’s Travel Stops. “We’re finding that millennials are really looking for fresh offerings and snacking occasions.”