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The Risk of Failure in the Supply Chain Industry

 

The sheer number of variables which spell success for a supply chain industry can also lead to its failure by simply refusing to act when required. With growing diversification of products in a list of c store distributors, that are required to meet customer demand makes supply chains critical to the success of business. In current business scenario very few companies have remained successful by catering to local requirements, most source their products from across the globe and also cater to international clientele.

 

The supply chain industry, with a long list of convenience store distributors, now extends across international boundaries wherein every small weak spot creates a new risk of failure. While globalization has increased opportunities for business it has also opened up new vulnerabilities which are not limited to natural disasters and political upheavals.

 

Challenges to supply chain industry – According to risk management association Airmic, firms in a globalized market are placing their reputation and financial security in the hands of unknown suppliers who may or may not be trustworthy. To cut costs companies are compromising on quality and supply models to take risks which can end up in public relation disasters if suppliers do not understand their business policies. Here are few common challenges faced by supply chain industry:

 

Offshoring business practices – Several firms have burnt their fingers when trying out offshoring practices as they did not study local challenges of language and work culture.

Complexity and cost pressure – Supply chains involve multiple entities which work in coordination with each other to make it work and if these are too complex and others in the chain do not understand each other’s utility then it can lead to problems in the future. Global supply chains are both complex and expensive in current scenario of fluctuating currencies where exchange rates does not hold good for everyone.

Communication and rapid changes in production methods – Technology in today’s industry is changing at a fast pace with internet providing a common platform for people to share ideas and experience with each other to improve their situations. While internet is bringing a positive revolution in political scenario it is changing manufacturing and supply industry at an equally fast pace. Trends and tastes are catching on across the globe within days with mobile applications and convenience store chains are struggling hard to keep up with them.

Global supply chains are fragile and are vulnerable to risk but their importance cannot be denied in markets of today. Though firms have tried to integrate risk management into the structure it has been limited to small risks and operating models have paid scant attention to financial risks. Large multinationals with adequate financial resources are able to manage their global supply chains efficiently as they lay emphasis on sharing risks with local suppliers and select partners after conducting through checks about their business backgrounds. Technology savvy companies have been able to create customized software solutions to manage their supply chains which can identify vulnerabilities and weak links. This will help the supply chain facilitators to remain prepared for disaster management and eventualities so that when these situations do occur alternatives can be arranged to ensure that everything goes as usual and supply chain does not get disrupted. Disruption in supply chains can lead to reduction in company revenue and market share. These disruptions can cause damage in customer credibility and also with stakeholders which can play havoc with your finances.

 

How to manage supply chain risks – Companies keen on expanding their business territory to retain their competitive edge in the industry need to manage risks that come with globalization by making necessary arrangements to mitigate these losses. Here are the following precautionary steps that firms can take to reduce supply chain risks as follows:

Preventing disruption of supply chain – Statistical data analysis can measure and improve performance of supply chain operations to reduce quality disruption issues. This data should be based on past problems which have caused problems so similar issues in future can be handled without causing any disruption in supply chain. Convenience store chains can remove these risks in supply chain by identification of key products which help them maintain business and locations of supply chain which will help them to put necessary measures in place to remove chances of disruption.

Global sourcing for risk minimization – Though globalization has increased supply chain risks it also provides opportunities to manage costs and carry on operations in an uncertain economic scenario. Companies which have managed to understand local work cultures of offshore locations carry out their production activities in these areas by using local workforce and resources to sell into local markets and also export to near locations.

Controlling supply chain – Every business is exposed to risks which is dependent on its operations i.e. the larger a business the greater are its risks. A small single convenience store or grocery store will have lesser risks with regard to supply chain as most of its business is suppliers are located within the state and it can manage with alternative suppliers if one fails to deliver. Large convenience store chains and grocery store chains which have operations spread across the nation and even overseas may take the help of local franchisees to manage business. To manage their national operations they can employ technology and communication measures to integrate supply chains and inventory to guard against disruptions.

Both small and large businesses continue to look for new business opportunities to improve profits and meet customer demand for wider product choice which is increasing their risk levels and exposing them to political and economic turmoil and natural disasters. A recent survey carried out after a spate of natural disasters struck the nation showed that only 33 percent are prepared to handle risks while larger ones are more prepared due to their past experiences. Employees traveling abroad with company data on their laptops and smartphones pose risk of data breaches which is disregarded by companies seeking to expand business overseas. It is now obvious that smaller firms are more vulnerable than large ones to supply chain risks and have to learn from others experiences to help them become better prepared.

 

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Comments Off on Will Convenience Stores be Replaced by Online Food Stores in Future?

Will Convenience Stores be Replaced by Online Food Stores in Future?

 

Will Convenience Stores be Replaced by Online Food Stores in Future? A recent industry study has stated that online sales of groceries and other food products will increase by nearly 15 billion in forthcoming years as growing traffic woes and single parent families are finding it tough to waste time on standing at the aisles of convenience stores and grocery chains. Shoppers in general are getting tired of long queues in super markets and parking problems along with problems of deceptive pricing offered by wholesale grocers and food marts. Institute for Grocery Distribution states that online convenience is fast becoming the hottest growing sector in retail industry which will soon have turnover of several billion and will fulfill the grocery requirements of families and individuals in both rural and urban areas.

 

Budget stores with online presence

 

The recent economic crisis led to rapid changes in people’s buying habits across the world with growing consciousness about sticking to fulfillment of basic needs. Budget convenience chain stores which are offering low prices and small quantities along with home delivery options are finding takers around the world. The growth in ownership of smartphones and tablets which allow easy download of shopping applications has also led to growth in demand for online grocery shopping. Online shopping offers buyers the advantage of comparing prices available at various convenience stores in their neighborhood, before making the purchase at a place which give the best rate and quality.

 

Growth of convenience store hypermarkets into multi-service outlets

 

In recent years large format hypermarkets and supermarkets have broken down their services into multiple sections and now offer fast food sections and open air cafe with purchase of groceries and other convenience items. Most metro areas of United States are now serviced by state level or national level grocery chains like Peapod, Safeway, Amazon Fresh, Schwan’s, Fresh Direct and ShopFoodEx which services all 50 states across the nation. Though people are comfortable buying branded groceries with clear details about dates of manufacture, expiry and place of manufacture they are still not comfortable about ordering fresh produce like vegetables, fruits and dairy products.

 

Using local grocer’s online ordering system

 

Check with your local grocer or supermarket if it is part of a large chain or if they have a local delivery system. It is most likely that they will ask you to sign up and order for a specific quantity and then either deliver it themselves or ask a third party to make the delivery after picking up the ordered items from their store. If your local convenience store is a standalone shop then most likely it will not have an online delivery system as the economics will be beyond its capacity. To skirt this problem some local grocers have come up with an innovative idea wherein a shopper can order their products online and make the payment so their products are packed and ready to be picked up on the way home. While making purchases online through credit and debit card follow regular tips to avoid online frauds and scams.

 

 

Why online food stores are becoming popular

 

By making online purchases you are only looking at products you actually require instead of browsing across store shelves which helps you avoid regular bait and capture practices which convenience stores apply to make you buy things which may not be important. You are unlikely to be tempted by flashy new products or try campaigns as you are not hunting for bargains and new products.

 

Prices and quantities of products you need are clearly marked and with a ready shopping list you can add them to the shopping cart and checkout instead of being attracted by “every day low price” offers. The online purchase comfort allows you to buy small quantities several times instead of stocking up bulk purchases which can lead to wastage. As you are constantly looking at total bill amount while making purchases, it can help you get grocery purchases under control when you have a budget.

 

How to take advantage of online convenience stores

 

If you are among the first to try out online convenience shopping then seek out safe, non perishable and branded products on a small scale until you are sure that the delivery service understands your requirements in terms of brand and quality of delivery. Avoid non-packaged products like vegetables, fruits, eggs, milk, fish, deli meats, seafood as your idea of fresh may clash with theirs though they are more likely to rotate their products than your local store.

 

Why online convenience stores cannot replace real stores soon

 

The entire retail food distribution industry across the nation is supported by several thousand small and large convenience stores, grocery stores, specialty food stores and food service providers that rake in business of more than $3 million on a daily basis. Though super markets, hypermarkets and warehouse retailers and clubs sell a vast variety of products besides food products, these have not been able to replace the local grocery store as their turnover is slower and they tend to stock older stock than small stores. These days to increase their clientele, convenience store have shed their aura of fuel stores and have started offering multiple choices like fresh foods zones and juice fountains which provide ready to eat options for buyers on the go.

 

Large grocery store chains with branches across the nation or state have their own ready to eat food brands and dairy products which increase their clientele as now shoppers can relax after completing their purchases for coffee and other refreshments. To increase sales of top selling products or brands, convenience stores provide shelves to manufacturers or their merchandising agents so buyers do not have to hunt around across the store.

 

To provide their buyers with better priced convenience products, grocery distributors formed cooperatives like Associated Group and United Grocers which gave them greater purchasing power and control as they could now directly buy in bulk from manufacturers. These techniques adopted by convenience stores and other retailers help them provide products at a competitive price to buyers which may not be possible for online grocery store so people still divide their shopping into both online and direct modes.

 

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Comments Off on How to Boost Your Convenience Store Product Sales

How to Boost Your Convenience Store Product Sales

 

With the easy penetration of the Internet people now are better informed about products available in the market and also products that the list of convenience stores closest to them are likely to hold. It is rare for people to visit a convenience store in a relaxed manner and browse around for new additions to the store shelves or to generally chat up with the cashier or sales person. Since people have a tendency to try and pick up all products they require for home at one place it is important for the convenience store to gauge frequently demanded products and store them to have regular clientele.

The chances of you walking into a convenience store or grocery store you frequented as a child is rare as they have now given way to larger c-store ones. Have you wondered why small grocery store chains or even large c-store chains are unable to sustain business and close down? Is it due to lack of customers or lack of diversity in merchandise or overconfidence in the store owner that they will never go out of business? Much has been written about store layout, merchandising, advertising, customer analysis, market analysis but one solution does not fit everyone. Whether you are a single store operator or a statewide chain of c-stores or even a nationwide chain of grocery stores you have to keep your finger on market pulse to exist and survive in this fiercely competitive business.

Boosting sales and growing clientele 

To run your convenience store business on profit you need not expand it into a national wide chain but have definite goals for expansion and growth over a period of time. The following tips can help boost your c-store sales and manage competition from other c-stores in the area.

Create of loyal clientele 

Develop your relationship with regular clients in such a manner that they come to you for all their requirements instead of stopping en route on their way back home. This will increase your foot traffic as whenever your clients are in the vicinity of your store they will casually drop in with friends or family members to browse around and pick up whatever they desire. You can develop a rapport with clients by having general chat at the counter if they got what they wanted and what other products they feel should be an ideal part of your merchandise.

A great way to attract new customers and up sell new products is to build a relationship with them by promoting goods through personalized marketing tools like email and royalty points. With advancement in technology you can now keep track of customers’ buying patterns and use simple data mining techniques to differentiate the regular big spenders from casual shoppers. Maintain continuous correspondence with regular big spenders by inviting them to promotions and new launches with complimentary samples. Attract new customers with targeted promotions during festivals and digital signage at prominent locations.

Happy employees provide excellent customer service 

How many times have you been to convenience stores once and then never stepped into it again just because the sales person refused to help you or cash clerk was rude? The same can happen to your store too if your staff is not happy and are paid below market rate or are treated shabbily.

Remember that sales and cash staff are the face of your organization and you cannot be everywhere at all times and happy employees will generate happy customers. Have achievable reward systems and sales goals to measure employee performance and show your appreciation in public for innovation. Have an incentive plan for sales people and reward them for meeting milestones. Celebrate anniversaries and birthdays by sending out customized gifts or gift certificates to them and their family members to show your care.

Promotion and Innovation

In the fast changing business of convenience stores continuous innovation is the only way to stay in business and keep ahead of competitors. Have sales promotion events along with price cuts during summer and winter holidays to attract foot traffic. Work with your sales teams to develop innovative sales plans to attract new customers and to induce existing customers to buy more. Have brainstorming sessions to find out why a particular product is selling fast and if it would help to stock more or have a promotional scheme to sell more.

Look at the competition to find how their innovative ideas can work for your convenience store model. Take the opinion of customers and sales staff after making display changes to see if they like it. You can also employ the services of an experienced merchandiser to display your products attractively so customers can find their products easily. Placing complementary products next to each other also helps boost sales as people tend to remember necessary products only after viewing them.

Expand only if you can manage 

Keep your eye on a bigger goal if you get into convenience store business as only that can help you stay competitive. Successful store owners are always looking to expand and not necessarily across a large geographical area but rather to retain a profitable business. Identify need and study local competition before you start a new branch in a new location. You can also expand your existing convenience store to include new products and services. With growing demand for fresh food products several convenience stores have expanded their operations to start ready to eat food items like sandwiches, burgers, salads, soups as takeaway items. If you have the reliable and experienced staff then expanding your single convenience store into a statewide chain can be a step in the right direction.

If you have a few years of experience in managing a convenience store you many think that setting up a convenience store chain will be easy with right kind of investors and identification of a good location. But that is not always the case as sometimes external unplanned situations can play havoc with a store opening and put a stop to the best laid plans. Take the help of experts and evaluate possible mishaps that can happen before investing time and money into a convenience store and when it is done invest all your energy and expertise to run it in a profitable manner.

With the easy penetration of the Internet people now are better informed about products available in the market and also products that the list of convenience stores closest to them are likely to hold. It is rare for people to visit a convenience store in a relaxed manner and browse around for new additions to the store shelves or to generally chat up with the cashier or sales person. Since people have a tendency to try and pick up all products they require for home at one place it is important for the convenience store to gauge frequently demanded products and store them to have regular clientele.

The chances of you walking into a convenience store or grocery store you frequented as a child is rare as they have now given way to larger c-store ones. Have you wondered why small grocery store chains or even large c-store chains are unable to sustain business and close down? Is it due to lack of customers or lack of diversity in merchandise or overconfidence in the store owner that they will never go out of business? Much has been written about store layout, merchandising, advertising, customer analysis, market analysis but one solution does not fit everyone. Whether you are a single store operator or a statewide chain of c-stores or even a nationwide chain of grocery stores you have to keep your finger on market pulse to exist and survive in this fiercely competitive business.

Boosting sales and growing clientele 

To run your convenience store business on profit you need not expand it into a national wide chain but have definite goals for expansion and growth over a period of time. The following tips can help boost your c-store sales and manage competition from other c-stores in the area.

Create of loyal clientele 

Develop your relationship with regular clients in such a manner that they come to you for all their requirements instead of stopping en route on their way back home. This will increase your foot traffic as whenever your clients are in the vicinity of your store they will casually drop in with friends or family members to browse around and pick up whatever they desire. You can develop a rapport with clients by having general chat at the counter if they got what they wanted and what other products they feel should be an ideal part of your merchandise.

A great way to attract new customers and up sell new products is to build a relationship with them by promoting goods through personalized marketing tools like email and royalty points. With advancement in technology you can now keep track of customers’ buying patterns and use simple data mining techniques to differentiate the regular big spenders from casual shoppers. Maintain continuous correspondence with regular big spenders by inviting them to promotions and new launches with complimentary samples. Attract new customers with targeted promotions during festivals and digital signage at prominent locations.

Happy employees provide excellent customer service 

How many times have you been to convenience stores once and then never stepped into it again just because the sales person refused to help you or cash clerk was rude? The same can happen to your store too if your staff is not happy and are paid below market rate or are treated shabbily.

Remember that sales and cash staff are the face of your organization and you cannot be everywhere at all times and happy employees will generate happy customers. Have achievable reward systems and sales goals to measure employee performance and show your appreciation in public for innovation. Have an incentive plan for sales people and reward them for meeting milestones. Celebrate anniversaries and birthdays by sending out customized gifts or gift certificates to them and their family members to show your care.

Promotion and Innovation

In the fast changing business of convenience stores continuous innovation is the only way to stay in business and keep ahead of competitors. Have sales promotion events along with price cuts during summer and winter holidays to attract foot traffic. Work with your sales teams to develop innovative sales plans to attract new customers and to induce existing customers to buy more. Have brainstorming sessions to find out why a particular product is selling fast and if it would help to stock more or have a promotional scheme to sell more.

Look at the competition to find how their innovative ideas can work for your convenience store model. Take the opinion of customers and sales staff after making display changes to see if they like it. You can also employ the services of an experienced merchandiser to display your products attractively so customers can find their products easily. Placing complementary products next to each other also helps boost sales as people tend to remember necessary products only after viewing them.

Expand only if you can manage 

Keep your eye on a bigger goal if you get into convenience store business as only that can help you stay competitive. Successful store owners are always looking to expand and not necessarily across a large geographical area but rather to retain a profitable business. Identify need and study local competition before you start a new branch in a new location. You can also expand your existing convenience store to include new products and services. With growing demand for fresh food products several convenience stores have expanded their operations to start ready to eat food items like sandwiches, burgers, salads, soups as takeaway items. If you have the reliable and experienced staff then expanding your single convenience store into a statewide chain can be a step in the right direction.

If you have a few years of experience in managing a convenience store you many think that setting up a convenience store chain will be easy with right kind of investors and identification of a good location. But that is not always the case as sometimes external unplanned situations can play havoc with a store opening and put a stop to the best laid plans. Take the help of experts and evaluate possible mishaps that can happen before investing time and money into a convenience store and when it is done invest all your energy and expertise to run it in a profitable manner.

 

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Comments Off on New CBD Hemp Oil Vapor Hits Convenience Store Shelves

New CBD Hemp Oil Vapor Hits Convenience Store Shelves

 

An extract from the Cannabis genus of plants, the Cannabidiol has been known for its use in the pharmaceutical industry. A schedule I drug as per the DEA Drug Code, Cannabidiol is not marijuana, although many people mistake it to be. It is a compound of the cannabis genus plants and has several medical properties that make it useful for many pharmaceutical companies. Cannabidiol, also known as CBD has not been in the limelight as much as THC or tetrahydrocannabinol, which is the major compound in marijuana that gets you high.

 

There is a significant difference between the two compounds, which research has proven time and again. Doctors are usually worried about the side effects that THC in medicines can cause in their patients. But they aren’t as worried about CBD. The available data of the positive impact that Cannabidiol can have on a person and the fact that it is non-psychoactive and safe to use has made it an ingredient that most companies across industries are considering. One such industry is the electronic cigarette or vaping industry, which is prevalently using CBD as one of the flavors that people can enjoy.

 

Pure CBD vapors launches its products in the market

 

With more and more people using e-cigarettes considering their health, the number of options that one has for vaping are also increasing. This includes the variety of vaping liquid flavors that are available in the market. Recently, a new CBD Hemp Oil Vapor hits convenience store shelves and pharmacies across the US. A company called Pure CBD Vapors is launching its range of CBD flavored vaping liquids that e-cigarette users can use.

 

The vaping liquid is available in four unique CBD flavors including Purple Haze, Wowi Maui, Strawberry Bliss and Peach Kush. These flavors are available in 10 ml bottles priced at just $29.99. Peach Kush flavored vaping liquids are available in different concentrations of CBD – one with 25mg and the other with 50mg. The rest of the flavors come with only 25mg CBD, which makes them absolutely safe for personal use.

 

With these new vaping liquids in the market soon, there is no need for you to get stuck with the same old vaping liquid flavors as before.

 

Pure CBD uses industrial hemp

 

If you are thinking that CBD is going to get you “stoned” like marijuana, you are wrong. CBD does not have the psychoactive effects that TCH has on people, which is what makes it a preferred ingredient for medicinal preparations. Also, the hemp oil vapors that Pure CBD Vapors is offering are made from industrial hemp, which is professionally cultivated in controlled environment specifically for use in industrial uses.

 

Industrial hemp, owing to its non-drug properties, is used in the production of paper, food products, textiles, biodegradable products, fuel and even nutritional foods. Another reason for popularity of industrial hemp is that it needs little or no pesticides at all to grow, which means there is no forced soil erosion. Also, industrial hemp produces more oxygen than naturally grown cannabis which is cultivated for medicinal and recreational uses. The important point to note here is that Marijuana and Kemp both come from the cannabis genus of plants, but they are not the same. Given that, you can be assured that our new CBD hemp oil vapors that will soon be on convenience store and pharmacy shelves is absolutely safe to use, as we use industrial hemp and not marijuana during preparation.

 

Refresh your senses with the hemp oil vapors

 

Nicotine cigarette smoking kills, which is a fact that everyone knows. Perhaps that is also the reason you have switched to or are planning to switch to vaping, or e-cigarette smoking, a safer alternative to those who are trying to quit smoking. E-cigarettes are easy to use and contain no nicotine at all – in fact, they are made of a battery, a body and a vaping liquid chamber that gets heated and generates vapor that the user inhales.

 

Now this vapor comes in different flavors, and you can choose any flavor of your choice. What makes hemp oil vapor better than the rest? Hemp is known for its medical properties and has been proven to lay a significant role in relieving a person of stress and anxiety. Throw away that cigarette and pick up your pack of e-cigs for a refreshing and healthy vaping with our new, CBD flavored vaping oils.

 

Not only will you be refreshed and relaxed, you will also be protecting your body from nicotine abuse.

 

It is 100 percent legal

 

Worried about legality of CBD use? Remove any worries you have for Pure CBD Vapors are all made of safe and 100 percent legal industrial hemp plants and not restricted compounds like marijuana. So when you are using the PureCBDVapors.com product, you can be sure that you are doing nothing illegal.

 

In fact, you can safely and happily use your e-cig anywhere with our vaping liquids, as e-cigs do not produce any smoke, and can even be used in public, without disturbing anyone’s personal space or environment. So even if you are using a hemp oil flavored vapor in your e-cig, you will not be disturbing anyone. More than anything, you don’t have to worry about its legality as industrial hemp is a hundred percent legal and safe for use.

 

Get your choice of pure CBD vapors near you

 

As use of CBD as an ingredient in vaping oils is entirely legal, you can find our product at a convenience store near you. You can also find the many flavors of Pure CBD Vapors at pharmacies and exclusive e-cig stores. As the product is legal across 50 states of America, you can buy it; fill it in your e-cigarette and vape as much as you want, without jeopardizing your own health or the health of others around you.

 

Make sure you keep reading this space for more information on the vapors, so that you don’t miss the chance of getting your hands on it as soon as this CBD Hemp Oil e-juice hits the U.S markets.

Reference: http://www.purecbdvapors.com/new-cbd-hemp-oil-vapor-hits-convenience-store-shelves/

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Comments Off on Following Up After Your C Store Directory Creates Sales Opportunities

Following Up After Your C Store Directory Creates Sales Opportunities

 

You did it! You used your C Store Directory and arranged a sales meeting for your product line. Everyone at the meeting seemed interested and excited at the prospect of stocking your items. However, they did not place an order at the end of the presentation. They might need to clear it with someone higher up, or there is larger panel that makes the final decision. In some cases, the general manager might need to get permission from the company headquarters. This is when follow-up becomes critical to get the sale. Here are some helpful hints for follow-up.

 

Set The Date

The perfect time to arrange a follow-up call is at your sales meeting. Simply ask the person you are meeting with the best time to follow-up with him or her. They know their schedule, and how much time they need to make a decision. Also, they know the times of the week and day that they are more readily available to take your call. By allowing the customer to set the follow-up time, you are more likely to receive a positive response to your call.

 

Send A Thank You Note

The idea of sending a handwritten thank you note seems antiquated but makes a big impression. If you take the time to jot down a few handwritten lines on a notecard, it shows you are thinking about that customer personally. You have not copied and pasted a generic email. This will surprise and delight most of your prospective customers and make a positive impact.

 

One Week

If you have not heard from your customer within a week and did not set up a time to connect with them, you should call at the one-week point. Any sooner will seem pushy, but you do not want too much time to pass. After a week, your presentation is still fresh in their mind, and they are still excited about your products, making it a great time to follow-up without seeming too anxious.

 

If you need help ordering a directory or have other questions, please contact us.

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Comments Off on How C-stores are Benefiting from Frozen Food and Beverages

How C-stores are Benefiting from Frozen Food and Beverages

 

Convenience store owners like their grocery store counterparts have discovered the benefits of frozen beverages and ready to cook food products which are making inroads into people’s houses across the globe. The demand for frozen foods which first began with dairy products like numerous cheese varieties and desserts has now expanded to cut vegetables, meats and even ready to eat food products that have to be warmed or boiled to make them edible. In Europe and United States frozen food accounts for a large part of shoppers’ baskets for both online and offline purchase of food products. Market analysts state that the current frozen food demand is likely to grow by almost double within the next decade.

 

Emerging trends of frozen food purchase – Though a large quantity of frozen foods is bought through wholesale foods online as it gives better economic value and offers wider selection for families where people rarely have time to go grocery shopping. Studies show that frozen beverages are in demand among women between 20-40 years a highly influential group in society that c-stores till date are struggling to retain. High quality beverages with clean packaging design and great taste which is available at a smart price is ardently desired by women in this demographic group as they look for value and taste. While hot and cold dispensed beverages are available at every convenience store food distributors are urging store owners to offer more fresh and healthy drinks choices to customers.

 

Fast growing sectors of frozen foods and beverages

 

Dairy products – This is the oldest frozen food and beverage category with well known brands of frozen desserts and drinks that have been loved for generations. Convenience store brokers regard frozen beverages as the strongest category in dairy products which has a strong market and complement them with other dairy products. Besides frozen beverages, flavored yogurt and cheeses have also shown a steady growth trend as it is centered on snacking occasions.

 

To make frozen beverages exciting and attract young crowds’ a large number of convenience store owners are setting up kiosks for them to customize their choices with flavored toppings, natural ingredients and fruit combinations. These beverages are offered as breakfast or snack combos with sandwiches, salads, wraps and flat breads that shoppers can eat on the go.

Frozen beverages – Dairy based cold beverages like flavored milk shakes and smoothies are in great demand all throughout the year as people combine them with ice creams to customize the taste to their choice. Cold beverage distribution is generally done by manufacturers themselves using their own transportation facilities to retain freshness and maintain quality of their products as that is vital to retain customer base.

 

They work up a partnership deal with c-stores and grocery store owners to maintain the beverage dispensing machines and fountains to maximize gross margins. Industry reports state that convenience stores on an average sell around $900 worth of frozen beverages in a month which has a gross margin of 52 percent. Smart convenience store owners which have set up a separate snacks cum fast food counter cash in on people’s demand for frozen beverages by combining new flavors with exciting promotions and food combinations and advertising heavily on local social media to attract locals. While frozen coffee blends grew by 11 percent in 2008-2012, the frozen beverages market had contributed $2.3 billion to profits of c-stores during 2012. Fastest growing category in frozen beverages has been iced coffee and slush drinks which have expanded by double digits in last five years.

 

While iced coffee grew by 7 percent slushes have become an iconic growth engine for struggling convenience stores. Though these carbonated drinks had a rocky start grocery as stores did not have knowledge of refrigeration and maintenance it has now become a favorite with 7Eleven’s “Slurpee” and “ICEE”. Convenience stores have a high margin with this product as only 20 percent of it is actual cost of food while 80 percent is profit margin which does not require a full time employee for servicing as buyers can purchase it from self serving vending machine.

 

Frozen pizza and bakery products – The demand for pizza remains unabated in United States as its residents consume around 100 acres of pizza every day. This widespread appeal for pizza has encouraged grocery distributors and c-stores to develop their own brands of ready to eat frozen pizza though it is extremely competitive to build volume. To expand their product line and encourage regular shoppers to sample their merchandise both grocery stores and convenience stores are offering pies, flavored breads, frozen sandwiches and other baked products to tantalize.

 

Large stores like Walmart, Costco, Maverick and Kwik Trip are offering “take and bake” options for pizzas and pies which are sold under their own brands which just needs to be put in the microwave oven to become ready for eating.

 

Frozen meals – While frozen beverages along with pizzas, pies and sandwiches have been very popular with buyers as breakfast and snack options, complete meals are not likely to get into frozen food division. Though options like frozen fried chicken dishes and vegetable dishes are available the synthetic taste of these products generally keeps buyers at bay. People still prefer hot and fresh food options which can be ordered from nearest restaurant or can be picked up from a fast food outlet.

 

To make their food division profitable c-stores have to concentrate on managing inventory and lowering waste, while to keep their frozen food and beverage division profitable they have to maintain cold storage equipment in top working condition. The growth of fast food counters which offer hot items to customers are more popular than frozen food options as people look for portable meal options.

 

Shipments of frozen desserts and novelty items along with pizza have grown though lunch and breakfast meats have reduced. Though online grocery stores are the ones which can benefit most from frozen foods they are still trying to fine-tune their supply and delivery processes. Physical c-stores can take advantage of this situation by having click and collect options for regular customers who can order frozen food products online and pay so they can just pick up their orders without waiting in queues.

 

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Comments Off on Which C-Store Structure is Best for your Product?

Which C-Store Structure is Best for your Product?

Each manufacturer wants his creation to become a hit in the market with buyers craving for more and convenience stores vying with each other to display the product at their stores. But the whole process of manufacturing, marketing, distribution and sales along with competition management can get a bit too overwhelming for the manufacturer.

 

If you are a manufacturer of non food convenience product than your only sales outlet will be small and large convenience stores in the local region and across the state www.cstoredirectory.com, which can be done with help from distributors and wholesalers www.cstoredistributors.com, that can give you advice about how to get products into c stores. As a manufacturer of food products you have the option of selling your products through both c-stores and grocery stores which increases your customer base.

 

Whether you want to sell your products through small mom and pop convenience stores or large super stores like Walmart, efficient distribution is vital to the success of your brand and its future. To guarantee the success of your product it has to meet a vital need of target customers and should be available at a price that they are willing to pay for it.

 

As a manufacturer you may have little understanding of market conditions and thus try to sell your product through stores which have several close competitors in the same category leading to early death of your brand. So to be a successful convenience store brand you need to carry out detailed research of stores first in your area to find out the categories of products they sell and also the prices they are available at which will help set up an viable price for your product to induce target customers to buy them.

 

Categories of C-stores that would be ideal for your product

 

Standalone single c-stores – These are attached to gas stations and are located close to housing societies or are in remote highways away from civilization. These stores are generally part of chain of gas station or can even be a single mom and pop neighbor stores storing essentials that can be needed at any time of the day. These stores have limited stocks of products and are more tolerant to start-ups and the limited number of brands can help your product in getting the recognition it deserves as there is less competition. Even though these stores have limited customers they are loyal and have been with them for a long time so it is easy for your product to establish its brand value here and then proceed to more competitive areas.

 

Large superstore and warehouse retailer – These are spread across different levels which store a wide category of products like Walmart, Costco or Target. To get your product into this category of stores it has to show record of popularity in other markets as these stores do not accept starters. If you want to create a niche demand for your products then it is not likely to happen by making a start at a large superstore as it is likely to get lost among the numerous categories in the store. This category of c-store is workable if you have a large production facility and would be able to handle large orders by superstores as they depend on volumes to drive their profits.

 

C-store and grocery store chains – There are statewide and nationwide chain stores of mid-sized convenience stores which have retained their hold on local markets for several decades despite pressure by large superstores. To get your product into these chains you can either contact their buyers or take the assistance of convenience store brokers which supply to them.

 

When you are able to get a product into c-store chain it is easy to get it into other stores in the group once your product becomes popular as then it will get automatically accepted. If you are a manufacturer of liquid beverage then it is ideal that you carry out the beverage distribution yourself to retain the quality and freshness of the product. Stores have vending machines and fountains for beverages which can be helpful in dispensing the beverage or it can be packed and sold in cans and bottles to give a unique brand name to it.

 

Specialty stores – If you want to establish an upmarket reputation of your product brand then it is ideal that you adopt a selective distribution system so that they are available only in upscale stores. This can be done by using Checkstand Program which is a independent group of food distributors, rack jobbers and wholesalers which work as a professional distribution system to introduce new products into the market. They will carry out an area wise sampling of your products through the stores they work with to check its viability and then depending on popularity distribute it across stores affiliated with them.

 

Factors determining choice of store for your products – Though you can choose any of the above given store types to sell your convenience products ultimately it is the profit you earn and the growth in brand name will determine which is best for you. Unless you are selling your product online, distributors, wholesalers and store owners will charge a margin from their services which will get added to the actual sale price of your product that will be paid by customers. If these margins drive up the price of your product and it becomes more expensive than that of competitors, it will be difficult to gain a foothold in the market.

 

Retailers are offered a wide variety of products on a regular basis to stock on their shelves which gives them bargaining power to accept or reject a new product. Though this may seem unfair to you as a manufacturer one should consider that a retailer is taking a risk by replacing a product which is already giving returns with a completely new product. It is vital for the success of your brand to select the most ideal type of stores which can present it effectively and complement your advertising outlay.

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Collaborating with C-Stores to Distribute your Products

Through the years convenience stores www.cstoredirectory.com have evolved from dusty gas station stores to modern stores with well stocked shelves with food, beverages, household products and other items of daily use that can be used around the house. While grocery stores stock fresh and packed food items along with perishable and beverages, convenience stores store all necessities and also items that people are likely to buy on impulse leading to a tough battleground for new product launches. They provide the right platform for your products which is critical for their success.

 

You a manufacturer can use various resources like direct store delivery wholesalers, wholesale grocery distributors and brokers to get your product into convenience stores for a standard fee.

 

Why C stores are preferable

 

Industry data collected last month shows that nearly 160 million people enter convenience stores on a daily basis and spend between 3 to 10 minutes depending on their requirements opening up a large clientele for retailers to sell a wide variety of items. Stores now set up a separate section of ready to eat food items, pop-top beverages and other packaged goods that people can pick up on the go. Efficiently managed stores near heavily populated neighborhoods take the assistance of convenience store brokers to replenish their stocks on a regular basis and also to keep in touch with new products launched in the market.

 

Supplying merchandise to convenience stores through distributors will bring your product much faster within reach of customers. As a manufacturer of several products you would like to concentrate on production instead of sales and at such times a wholesale distribution specialist can help you establish links with convenience store owners within their contact circle. The high number of footfalls in c stores will provide with an inexpensive outlet for your products which you can use to earn profits by making more new products. In today’s world of quickly changing tastes and availability of wide range of options, retailers use the services of both agencies and individuals who can give them wide range of products at competitive prices.

 

How to distribute products to convenience stores

 

Every manufacturer of convenience products has to use different channels to distribute his products to c-stores and grocery chains depending on product type and utility. While food and beverage distribution can be done through wholesale distributors which specialize in these type of products, other durables like torches, tobacco products, cleaning agents, toiletries, cosmetics, stationery, batteries and electronic products are delivered by specialized distributors.

 

Selling beverages through c-stores

 

A large variety of hot and cold beverages are displayed in c-stores comprising of sweetened cola drinks, ordinary water and health drinks. New studies show that nearly one third of total sales earned by c stores are through sales of beverages. Though most beverage distribution are carried out by the manufacturers or by third party distributors, they are also sometimes distributed through specialized grocery distributors in remote area which service single mom and pop grocery stores spread across the nation which cannot stock large quantities. A large majority of new beverages are now launched in c-stores to create a market for them throughout the nation.

 

Selling food products through c-stores

 

Though in the early days of convenience retailing, the stores contained more of tobacco products, convenience items, beverages like beer and a few food products, but the scenario has changed completely. Now c-stores have their own takeaway sections along with fast food outlets as a part of the convenience offered to walk in customers who come to fill gas in their vehicles. If you are keen on introducing a new range of ready-to-eat products then convenience stores are your best bet to reach a wide range of customers. You can try approaching local stores in your area directly and depending on customer feedback work with food distributors to sell your food products within the state.

 

Collaborate with C-stores through checkstand program

 

If you feel that your product will be an instant hit and requires a strong platform to market it to convenience stores across the nation, then you can use the expert services of an affiliate system like checkstand program. This association of wholesalers, food distributors, rack jobbers, brokers and others in the distribution chain work as a group to provide a single launch platform to introduce new products in convenience stores.

 

After they check the viability of your products at a few stores in your locality which are affiliated to them, they will take the responsibility of launch, display and distribution to anywhere between 200-5000 stores located across the nation at a certain fee. This saves the manufacturers from taking on the responsibility of looking for distributors and ensuring that their products are available before their target customers when required.

 

Collaborate with C-stores through wholesaler distributors

 

To get a product before the customers at a competitive price they would be willing to pay for requires efficient management of logistics and partnership between manufacturers, distributors and retailers. Wholesaler distributors manage smooth flow of goods by absorbing cost of transportation and risks involved during the process of distribution. To reduce the number of intermediaries, large convenience store chains work with specialist wholesale distributors www.cstoredistributors.com who deal in one or two products and know where to source the best quality at low price.

 

As they have insider knowledge about market demand and supply frequencies they can use this information to turn your new product into a bestseller by branding it effectively through c-store chains.

 

While convenience stores can help sell your product, manufacturers should remember that it has to be constantly in demand for stores to dedicate shelf space to them. If the store gets a better product at a lesser price which catches the fancy of customers then your product will be easily replaced with another. Besides providing better discounts on bulk purchases manufacturers have to constantly promote their products in online and offline media until it is deeply entrenched in buyers’ psyche like Coca Cola is for beverages and Hershey is for chocolate. So manufacturers have to constantly interact with buyers and c-stores stocking their products to understand the challenges on the horizon and meet them with better products.

 

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How to Distribute Fresh Fruits and Vegetables to Convenience Stores

 

Few of us would consider shopping at convenience stores for fresh fruits and vegetable and would walk over to the local grocery store as they have more fresh stock. With growth in food processing and preservation technology, more and more fresh vegetables and fruits are disappearing into tins and bottles as juices and pickles making them unavailable to low income families.

 

With slow and gradual disappearance of farmers markets and stores specializing in fruit and vegetable, more and more children are reverting to artificially flavored fruit juices with high sugar content. A recent study has shown that lack of access to healthy food has led to growth of obesity as people revert to fast food instead of homemade items with low fat and high fiber content.

 

Availability of fresh farm products in rural and urban areas

 

With their proximity to farms, convenience store and grocery stores have easy access to fresh fruits and vegetables as supply and delivery is easy. Several grocery store chains with warehouses close to rural areas have tie-ups with large farms to buy their products wholesale and distribute them across their stores in the region. Though grocery stores are expected to carry more food products than convenience stores, in Texas it was noticed that dollar stores and convenience stores carried more fruits and vegetables along with other healthy food items. Availability of fresh food options in rural areas have made the people healthier when compared to people taking canned fruits and vegetables.

 

To make fresh vegetables and fruits available in urban convenience stores wholesale food distributors like Arbre Farms Corporation, Aunt Mid Produce, Atwater Foods, Burnette Foods and several others adopted the technology of IQF or individual quick freeze to distribute them across state boundaries. This technology has revolutionized the industry as it allows even quickly perishable products to stay fresh for long time as long as temperature is maintained during delivery and storage.

 

While some of these firms own farms, others have long term agreements with farmers who deliver their produce at specific pickup points which are then cleaned and frozen and distributed to fruits and vegetable wholesalers or to food processing companies. These agreements allow them to maintain greater control over quality of output and also reduce wastage during transportation.

 

Growers/Wholesalers of fruits and vegetables

 

Besides farmers who use outlets like farmers’ markets to showcase their products and then have agreements with local convenience stores to deliver their products, there are growers’ cooperatives across the nation who collate their produce to sell to convenience store brokers. Growers’ cooperatives set up associations to pool their financial resources and expertise in growing fruits and vegetables like apples, cherries, cucumber, peanuts, cabbages, pumpkins, potatoes and others which can then be sold to food processing companies and food distributors or even restaurant chains. This form of collaborative effort is helpful in helping farmers get good price for their produce and also keeps them free from worrying about whom to sell their produce after every harvest. These grower associations divide their business into two or three categories to provide a wider market for their produce by selling to food service outlets like restaurant chains, distributing to retailer chains like convenience and grocery chains and also selling to food processing firms.

 

Indirect marketing resources

 

The production of fruits and vegetables is generally carried out on a small scale by marginal farmers which are located in rural areas far away from city markets. Since the price that farmers receive for their harvest depends on volume and quality of delivery they prefer selling it as a group instead of as individuals. In every location which grows fruits and vegetables, there are terminal wholesale markets wherein individual farmers assemble together to sell their produce to biggest bidders/intermediaries like wholesalers, exporters, retailers, convenience store buyers, restaurant chains and food service companies.

 

Wholesalers take delivery of these products and pack them up in pallets for distribution to their clients across the state to retail outlets. Farmers sometimes sell the produce directly to large distributors or local chain stores that pick up the produce from their farms to reduce wastage and maintain quality. To avoid middlemen who cut down their bargaining power, farmers often work with restaurant chains and fast food outlets in the area to increase sales and profit levels.

 

Supply directly to retail outlets

 

It is very rare for a farmer to directly sell his products to consumers and this situation generally happens only at farmers markets or through farmers’ cooperatives. To get a better price for their products farmers can have a direct association with local retail outlets like convenience stores and grocery stores and can get truckers to deliver daily produce to them. If farmers in a particular locality produce similar fruits and vegetables then they can get the assistance of marketing specialists who can advise them on better storage and presentation techniques to maximize sales.

Supply through food distributors

 

Merchandisers and food brokers who are experienced in dealing with both producers and sellers of fresh fruits and vegetables know where the demand and supply will be highest at different times of the year. They maintain easy distribution of products at different times of the year and stock the less perishable items at cold storage points in various locations closest to their client to facilitate deliveries at required times. Since prices of vegetables and fruits keep fluctuating depending on season deliveries and production, food distributors have to ensure that there is steady supply to keep prices at an affordable level.

 

As fruits and vegetable are highly perishable products they have to be stored and displayed in the best possible manner to make visitors buy them. Several times customers make their buying decision only after walking into stores depending on the layout and price of products on display. Delivery of high quality fresh fruits and vegetables help build consumer confidence and loyalty if it is combined with friendliness. Attractive merchandising and food distribution increases visibility of both small and large fruits and vegetables to draw the attention of buyers.

 

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When Contacting  Your Convenience Store Chains List

Your business has taken the first step towards growing your business by ordering a convenience store chains list. When it came, you immediately started planning the letters and calls you are going to make to attract new business. This is a great time to slow down and determine a game plan. You know that not every convenience store on the list is a good fit for your product, and those stores should be at the bottom of your list to contact. Here are some things to keep in mind when choosing which convenience stores to call on first.

 

Niche

Unless you have created something completely unique that no one has every thought of, your product already has a niche. Now, there are things that set your products apart from the crowd. Maybe you are selling potato chips in never heard of flavors or coloring books featuring the national parks in America. You will want to spend a little time identifying the convenience stores that offer a small amount of items in your niche to market to first.

 

Clientele

You know not all convenience stores cater to the same clientele. Anytime you go to buy gas, there are several stores all within the same price point with a couple that are offering higher quality gas for a higher price. If the product you are selling is high-end gourmet potato chips, then you want the convenience stores with the higher priced gas to top your list.

 

Location

In some cases, your product might have a short shelf life. Perhaps, you are selling gourmet cupcakes that are only fresh for a week. If you live in Georgia, you need to start your marketing campaign in places where shipping will only take a day or two at most. You do not want to start marketing in Seattle, Washington where shipping will take the better part of the week. Also, by marketing to your local area, you can push the idea that you are Southerners or Midwesterners and build sales off of a common trait.

 

It is up to you to make the most of your list and choose to contact the people most likely to purchase your products. With these things in mind, you can make the most of your time and marketing budget. At C. Store Distributor, we are dedicated to helping businesses just like yours find new streams of revenue and customers. If you have more questions about this or other topics, please contact us.

 

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