C-store customers want variety with their alcoholic beverages.
One of the toughest parts of retailing today is that American consumers have come to want and expect everything. But that’s one of the best parts of retailing when it comes to beer.
For convenience stores, selling beer has never been and never will be a zero-sum game, where one or two styles or a hot trend will all but confiscate the sales of another segment.
Whether consumers are swinging by to load up on their favorite classic beer or to opt for non-alcoholic or craft beer, hard seltzer, canned or ready-to-drink cocktails, they want choices, variety and selection.
The classic beers became classics for very good reasons, such as consistent quality, taste, texture, and exciting marketing campaigns and promotional offers.
Craft beer, which can offer different, richer and more distinct tastes — and because it tends to be local, sometimes a fresher product — provides an almost artisanal take on this time-honored, globally popular beverage.
Even veteran beer drinkers may choose to go with a non-alcohol beer on occasion as a way of enjoying that great beer taste and texture without the sluggish feeling that can sometimes result.
Convenience store customers, many of them millennials, look for hard seltzer on store shelves for its taste, variety and because it’s perceived as a healthier option.
At the same time, those same consumers may choose to reach for ready-to-drink cocktails, which provide a convenient, accessible and affordable way to drink their favorite cocktails. Many brands offer more premium products with interesting packaging and exotic and refreshing flavors that reduce the amount of carbs and sugar while focusing on natural ingredients.
All that to say, it’s important for c-stores to carry classic beers, but its crucial to incorporate emerging trends as well.