Consumer habits have changed immensely across all industries since the onset of the global pandemic. Within the retail industry specifically, convenience stores have transformed their marketing tactics and customer experience through the adoption of both convenient and contactless purchasing – curbside pickup and the replacement of cashiers with kiosk checkouts, to name a few. But despite these efforts, convenience stores are about to face a whole new set of challenges. You see, fuel sales account for a significant portion of their total revenue and, given the adoption of alternative fuel vehicles, convenience stores are now relying heavily on mobile strategies to bolster revenue.
In Mobile marketing: How mobile technology is revolutionizing marketing, communications and advertising, Rowles points out that the “fundamental shift in what retailers need to provide has been caused by the convenience, choice and transparency that mobile, and more broadly, digital marketing gives. The attitude of many retailers is that if you need something urgently you will stop come into the store…” but what are the implications of a world with lesser fuel economy? And how is mobile technology being leveraged to accommodate this shift?
- Prioritize 1:1 marketing: It’s important to point out that mobile is not a marketing channel in and of itself, but a “data collection channel that offers marketing opportunities” and, as such, tailoring your engagement for 1:1 marketing campaigns and understanding your customer segments is paramount and will help with purchasing decisions.
- Launch loyalty programs: will be key in terms of both data collection and validation that will inform action.
- Ordering and inventory management: Tracking rewards from the consumers perspective as well as digitizing inventory and ultimately integrating it within apps on the retailer side, will increase efficiencies and productivity.
By continuing to drive advancements in technology, understand and become laser-focused on their customer segments, and better streamline their inventory management, these mobile strategies will be must-haves for convenience stores hoping for a fighting chance to survive disruption now and in the coming years.
- The state of California has already announced the ban of gasoline-powered vehicles by 2035, with additional regulation expected to follow. How important will the role of mobile marketing be in order to accommodate the decline of in-store visits?
- Mobile technology rides in to save convenience stores | VentureBeat
- Changes in Consumer Habits | Convenience Stores and Gas Stations (intouchinsight.com)
- Evolving the Convenience Store (lek.com)