Types of Convenience Store
1.Mini Convenience Store
This store format, usually 800 to 1,200 square feet in size is extremely popular with the oil companies and the emphasis is on gasoline sales. However, in such locations, the owners view store sales as an important part of of the revenue and margin picture. Grocery selection is usually very thin and foodservice beyond prepared sandwiches. There usually is not any parking other than that at the pumps, although some locations do have modest striped parking. Open hours usually range from 18 to 24 hours. Customers are usually people buying gasoline. However, there are stores of this size in urban areas which may or may not sell gasoline.
2.Traditional Convenience Store
Most of the original convenience stores fall into this category. They are about 2,400 to 2,500 square feet in size and offer a product mix which includes dairy, bakery, snack foods, beverages, tobacco, grocery, health and beauty aids, confectionery, and perhaps prepared foods to go, fresh or frozen meats, gasoline, various services, and limited produce items. Most stores of this size have 6 to 12 striped parking spaces or some form of convenient pedestrian access. Hours are extended compared to average retailers with a large percentage open 24 hours per day. Such operations are normally owned by convenience store chains, but oil companies have also built or acquired stores of this size.
3.Expanded Convenience Store
Growth is occurring in the number of stores in the 2,800 to 3,600 square feet range. Such stores can accommodate more shelving for additional grocery products or room for significant fast food operations and seating. Stores using the space for more grocery items are taking advantage of the niche which has developed as supermarkets increasingly move above the 40,000 square foot range. A few large chains are using this “superette” approach. A greater percentage are using the space to take advantage of the high profit margins in fast foods. As the number of smaller operations proliferates (largely as a result of the oil companies), many convenience store chains apparently view the move towards increased fast foods as essential.
4.Hyper Convenience Store
These very large stores (4,000 to 5,000 square feet) usually offer an array of products and services arranged in departments. For example, such stores may offer variations such as a bakery, a sit-down restaurant area, or a pharmacy. Many of these locations do sell gasoline. The number of employees per shift can be large, particularly if a small restaurant is present. The number of parking spaces is substantial, especially since the amount of time the average customer spends in such an establishment can be significant. Hours are extended. Here again, as in the case of the Expanded Convenience Store, families and senior citizens as well as traditional convenience store customers are patrons.
Limited Selection Convenience Store
These stores, which range from 1,500 to 2,200 square feet, are becoming more numerous. They are often affiliated with oil companies and are in the size range of a converted two-bay service station. Both gasoline and store sales are generally important parts of profitability. They differ from the “mini convenience store” in a broader product mix and grocery offering (although still somewhat limited by traditional convenience store standards). Also, simple foodservice (hot dogs, nachos, popcorn, etc.) may be offered.