Joe Sheetz

Joe Sheetz Takes Charge

In addition to being named president of the family-owned convenience store chain, Sheetz was named vice chairman of the NACS Research Committee. By John Lofstock, Editor While all retailers maintain a busy work schedule, Joe Sheetz has had a whirlwind six months.  In October, Sheetz formally advanced into the position of president and CEO for

JohnNew

Understanding Your Workforce

When we finally come out on the other end of these economic doldrums, we’ll find—as in downturns past—that it will not be the big businesses that devour the small or even the fast who outdistance the slow. No, it will be the focused and flexible that outmaneuver and outlast the unfocused and inflexible. While the

JohnNew

Understanding What Your Customers Want

By John Lofstock, Editor Shoppers come to convenience stores to get their needs met. But if retailers don’t fully understand what shoppers want, efforts to capture more of their business will probably miss the mark. In these tough economic times, where c-stores are already facing stiff competition,  it is critical that c-store operators have a

mexicanfood

CSD’s 2014 Foodservice Study

Retailers recognize that an effective foodservice program helps position them as a destination for on-the-go consumers. But new research shows that these programs are vital for creating competitive points of differentiation in today’s hyper-competitive environment. By John Lofstock, Editor, and Joshua Tahan, Study Hall Research The U.S. foodservice industry generated an estimated $660 billion in

JohnNew

Make Foodservice Your Q Factor

The convenience store and petroleum industry is as dynamic and diverse as it has ever been. I have been fortunate to have a front row view of the industry’s evolution through the years, first as a young child learning the automotive and fuel industry at my father’s stations in Mt. Vernon, N.Y., then as an

A Partner with a Purpose

At a time when most Big Oil companies are exiting the retail business, Phillips 66 is stepping up with a host of new programs to help make its branded retailers more profitable. By John Lofstock, Editor The convenience store and petroleum industry has transformed dramatically over the past decade, but no change has been as

cigarettes

Taxation Taking a Toll on Cigarettes

Mounting restrictions on the retail sale of tobacco continues to plague this core convenience store category. By John Lofstock, Editor Long a staple of the convenience store industry, cigarettes remain a category in crisis. The rise of e-cigarettes and a never-ending spate of federal, state and local regulations have taken a toll on this once

Social-Media-Strategy

Is Your Company Posting with a Plan?

Retail businesses need a structured road map to manage successful social media programs. Social media strategy consultant Neal Schaffer shares 11 essential components all social media strategies should include. By John Lofstock, Editor Many company leaders understand that in order to survive in today’s business world, their companies must have a social media presence. But

GasPumpsLR

Gasoline Demand Seen Drifting Lower amid Snowstorms

By Brian L. Milne, Energy Editor, Schneider Electric Snowstorms are again enveloping the heavy population centers of the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic, with the winter weather expected to limit driving, retarding demand for gasoline which fell to a one-year low during the week that the “polar vortex” descended upon a large swath of the United States.

meatsnacks

Opportunities Abound in Meat Snacks

Mintel forecasts sales will top $1.3 billion by the end of 2015. By John Lofstock, Editor Estimates from Chicago-based Mintel Group, based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Expenditure Survey and other data, project solid growth for meaty snacks all the way through at least 2015, when they should top $1.3 billion. The research

Delivering a Service Culture

From great corners, clean restrooms and modern facilities to fresh food and a wide selection of popular snacks, convenience stores are committed to delivering outstanding service. This commitment is evident in the  industry’s growing sales numbers at a time when most other retail channels are struggling to break even. This service-driven culture is the industry’s

sandwich

Profile of Today’s C-Store Customer

A nationwide survey conducted by Convenience Store Decisions and Study Hall Research examines the impact the fuel offering is having on customers’ perceptions of convenience store foodservice programs. By Joshua Tahan, Study Hall Research and John Lofstock, Convenience Store Decisions Foodservice is a key area of opportunity for convenience stores. As revenues from gasoline and

energy

Energizing Product Sales

An increasingly competitive market for “energy-boosting” products continues to propel energy shot sales. As such, overall growth of energy drinks and shots has been influenced positively by new product launches and expanded retail distribution. By John Lofstock, Editor. Convenience stores are increasingly becoming known as the place to purchase energy shots. The industry now accounts

Are You Prepared for the Healthcare Challenge?

Quality employees and customer service are the backbone of the convenience store and petroleum industry. All you have to do is observe how top quartile companies treat and respect their personnel to understand what kind of asset frontline employees can be to a successful company. It’s no accident that these operators are outperforming their competitors

Steve Loehr

Preparing for Industry Challenges

Steve Loehr, vice president of operations support for Kwik Trip and the current NACS vice chairman and treasurer, shares his insights on the issues affecting convenience retailers. By John Lofstock, Editor. The convenience store industry continues to evolve, becoming a bigger part of the American consumers’ daily lives. In 2012, the industry achieved record sales

maverick1

Maverik Celebrated as CSD’s 2013 Chain of the Year

The Utah marketer honored for its unique adventure culture, an ongoing commitment to employees and its service-first mantra for delivering a memorable shopping experience.By John Lofstock, Editor. There are many common characteristics that comprise Convenience Store Decisions’ Chain of the Year winners. They are retail leaders, innovative marketers, committed to employees and completely driven by

BollaCoffee

Bolla Conquers the Big Apple

In a market that has traditionally been difficult for c-stores, Bolla Oil is thriving with an upscale new store design, a strong foodservice program and an impressive real estate portfolio. By John Lofstock, Editor. Surviving in New York’s cutthroat retail environment is difficult. But for Harry Singh (pictured above), failing to succeed was never an

bathrooms-8adbdec553d6c637

Take Restrooms from Good to Great

Convenience store operators pushing a foodservice program must be committed to store cleanliness and sanitation. By John Lofstock, Editor. A new national survey revealed that 63% of Americans have had a particularly unpleasant experience in a public restroom due to the condition of the facilities. That’s bad news for operators looking to grow foodservice sales.

Celebrating Maverik’s Adventure Culture

Maverik Inc. is a convenience store chain that prides itself on serving others, and that’s what helped make Convenience Store Decisions’ 2013 Chain of the Year award dinner in Atlanta so special last month. The Utah company that is so used to making others feel special found itself as the center of attention before nearly

gasoline edit

Paper Gains to Arrest Retail Gasoline Price Slide

By Brian L. Milne, Energy Editor, Schneider Electric In the U.S. gasoline market, it’s not unusual for retail prices to slow or even reverse their September decline in October, underpinned by seasonal refinery maintenance which reduces output that, in turn, pressures crude prices. As the U.S. remains in political gridlock, unable to reach deals on

Employees

Are You an Effective Leader?

For far too many of today’s convenience store executives, finding the time to unwind or take a family vacation is a difficult task. But not making the effort could have a negative impact on the business. By John Lofstock, Editor. Did you know 61% of employed Americans expect to have to do some work while

employee

Are You Creating a Culture of Exile?

Five warning signs that your employees may lack a vital sense of belonging in your corporate environment. By John Lofstock, Editor. Consider the power of belonging. Adolescents will change their speech, dress and behavior to fit in with their peer groups. Adults, too, gain much of their identity from the neighborhoods they live in, the

Tobacco Legislative Update

Tom Briant, executive director of the National Association of Tobacco Outlets, discusses the state of e-cigarettes and the local issues affecting tobacco retailing.   By John Lofstock, Editor. Of all the different tobacco legislative bills introduced this year in Congress and state legislatures, two issues stand out, namely higher tobacco taxes and electronic cigarettes. Both issues

Sunoco2-250x151

Sunoco Acquires Mid-Atlantic Convenience Stores, Converting Stores from BP

UPDATE 12:32 p.m.: PARAGRAPH TWO ON REBRANDING CSD has learned that all of MACS BP-branded locations are currently being converted to the Sunoco brand. Sunoco Inc. today reported that is has acquired Mid-Atlantic Convenience Stores (MACS). CSD has learned that Sunoco is currently in the process of converting all of MACS BP-branded locations over to

Building Profits and Relationships

Fresh off another successful National Advisory Group (NAG) conference last month in Nashville, I would like to thank all of the attendees that joined us for two days of outstanding networking, educational sessions and information exchanges. What makes NAG so special is that it is an association driven by retailers for retailers. We are an

css.php