In this year’s third quarter, the U.S. Consumer Price Index increased 11.2% for the year ending September and price-per-unit increases continued in the convenience channel. But ongoing decreases in gas prices from June through September helped boost consumer sentiment despite ongoing inflation concerns.
IRI’s report, “U.S. Convenience Store Landscape: Q3 2022,” explores the latest key trends in the convenience channel and the most effective ways that retailers can respond to them.
- The convenience channel saw accelerated year-over-year (YOY) dollar sales growth in Q3 (3.8%) versus Q2 (3.2%) but lagged the 7.8% Q3 YOY growth of MULO.
- Customers continue to average more trips than a year ago, but dollars and units per trip have seen YOY decreases in recent months.
- Private label growth in the convenience channel slowed in Q3 but continued to outpace growth of national brands as shoppers opt for more lower-priced options.
- Lower-income households are dining out less, seeking more deals and cutting back on nonessentials due to inflation concerns.
- C-stores should adjust their assortments to build value offerings, react quickly to competitive price gaps on key items, and continue to invest in e-commerce innovation to meet shopper needs.