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Convenience Stores: Replicating a Great Customer Experience in Every Store

“I need to provide a consistent shopping experience across all stores.”

This is the third post in a six-part series that addresses the main business challenges convenience store operators face today.

Delivering a great customer experience in one location is difficult enough. To build a strong reputation as a high quality food provider, convenience store chains need to ensure their customers have a great experience each time they shop, no matter which store they visit. Store environments and shopping conditions need to be remarkable across the entire enterprise.

Driving consistency in all stores is increasingly complex. Today, stores vary in shapes and sizes, are spread out geographically and have diverse layouts. Many convenience store operators lack the ability to monitor mechanical system performance; they have no way to know if a problem arises with their systems. Also, employee experience and skill levels may vary from location to location.

Refrigeration and lighting consume 65 percent of the energy used by convenience stores.1

A convenience store operator has limited visibility into how corporate standards are being followed at the store level. To make changes to temperatures or lighting, they likely need to use store associates to adjust the systems manually at each location, which is inefficient and time consuming and is often determined by personnel putting their own comfort ahead of their customers’. If a system problem occurs, it can be costly – resulting in unnecessary service calls, misdiagnoses by service providers, and even product loss.

When an operator cannot see and measure what is happening across every location, it’s difficult to run their business as efficiently and profitably as is needed in today’s changing convenience store landscape.

A positive outcome at one store needs to translate into a positive outcome at every store. Replication is key to developing a brand experience across all stores while simultaneously controlling operational costs – especially when it comes to food.

Implementing facility controls and enterprise monitoring will help remove inefficiencies, inconsistencies and unnecessary costs, enforce policy and provide uniform problem resolution across the network of stores. Facility management systems, like ecoSYS Site Supervisor, allow convenience stores to control HVAC, refrigeration systems and lighting. When combined with remote monitoring through ProAct Services, adjustments to systems settings can be made in all stores from one central location, ensuring consistency across the enterprise.

Then, when a customer walks into any store location within a chain, they’ll know the food quality and store environment will meet the same high standards they’ve come to expect from the convenience store brand.

Look for the next post in this series for specific ways convenience stores can provide a consistently positive experience across all stores.

John Atchley
National Account Executive, Retail Solutions
Emerson Climate Technologies

To read all posts in our series on convenience store challenges, click on the links below:

  1. Building Customer Trust One Experience at a Time
  2. Three Ways to Demonstrate Quality in a Pervasive Convenience Environment
  3. Replicating a Great Customer Experience in Every Store
  4. Three Ways to Provide a Consistent Shopping Experience Across All Stores
  5. Keeping Employees in Front of Your Customers
  6. Two Ways to Follow Best Practices with Limited Store Staff

Source: 1. Information Sheet, 2014

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