Millennials’ Love for C-Stores

As the largest generation in the United States, and contributing to over $1.3 trillion in annual consumer spending, Millennials are irrefutably shaping the U.S. economy with their unique consumption preferences and habits. The $204 billion convenience store industry is a retail format that can best satisfy 18 to 34 year-old consumers looking to fuel up with out slowing down. Wondering why this notoriously fastidious group, known to drive vehicles less than older demographics, is gravitating towards convenience stores? Allow us to explain.HM-Get-Started-Prepay-Intro-IMG

While Millennials are strikingly ethnically and socially diverse compared to other generations, the cohort is unified by their affinity for technology, connectivity, and the experience of growing up during a recession. When shopping for items both big and small, Millennials seek convenience, cost savings and the ability to crowdsource to make informed buying decisions quickly. Approximately 90% of Millennials use coupons—with over half of these accessing coupons on their mobile devices—and 43% will use social media to re-circulate information they discover.

Deals and food service are one of the main reasons that savvy Millennials are flocking to c-stores as one of their preferred retail spaces for buying food and drinks. According to General Mills, 29% of Millennials rate the availability of coupons and offers as extremely important in attracting them to convenience stores. Millennials amount to over 1/3 of all c-store shoppers, and are more likely to stop in to buy a beverage or snack than other generations who typically purchase gas exclusively. With a whopping 34% of 18-24 year-olds self-identifying as regular energy drink consumers, the demand for this and similar types of CPG’s is steady. Jeff Lenard of the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) is adamant that the future of convenience stores is food sales, not gas.

Of course the prevalence of convenience stores and the expediency they offer is also a major draw for this pragmatic generation. With an average visit lasting only 3 to 4 minutes, c-stores offer Millennials the “get in and get out” experience they tend to prefer. In fact, for food and beverages, USA Today reports that convenience stores are almost twice as important to Millennials as fast-casual restaurants. Mobile offers can further increase that level of convenience by providing easily accessible promotions in an app, text or mobile web page, capable of being delivered in real time to a consumer while they are in the store.

Koupon Media works with over half of the leading c-store chains to engage Millennials through mobile offers. Connect with our team to learn more about how the Koupon Platform can transform c-store sales and help to develop loyal millennial customers.