C-stores See Lift in In-Store Category Performance

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C-stores See Lift in In-Store Category Performance

05/13/2020

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Convenience channel in-store spending has entered into positive territory.

Following more than a month of lagging performance amid stay-at-home orders, consumer spending finally turned the corner for the week ended May 3 compared with the year-ago week as trip declines continued to slow, the latest weekly report from PDI and NACS on how COVID-19 is impacting consumer behavior revealed.

According to the report, easing of state restrictions, coupled with a boost in consumer spending tied to first of the month pay/benefits, helped to lift in-store category performance for the week ended May 3.

Dollar sales are up 3.2 percent vs. the same week a year ago, driven by strong results from other categories besides alcohol and tobacco, which continue to be the top performers. Categories that experienced improvements include packaged beverages (up 0.6 percent year over year) and candy. Salty snacks also got a boost, however, the category remains negative compared with the year-ago period.

Other highlights from the report found that:

  • Spend per trip for the week ended May 3 fell shy of the prior week's numbers (22.9 percent vs. 24.9 percent for the week ended April 26), but still far outpaced the year-ago week.
  • The year-over-year decline in trips continued to slow (-16.1 percent vs. -21.3 percent) for the week ended April 26.
  • The general merchandise and health and beauty care categories saw increases in dollar spend, up 5.4 percent and 5.8 percent, respectively, on a week-over-week basis. The two categories saw large year-over-year dollar increases as well at 28.7 percent and 17.3 percent, respectively, which were driven by trip and spend increases.

Powered by PDI Insights Cloud, the PDI and NACS report provides consumer trip and basket-level data and analysis from 5,500 mid- to large-size convenience retail sites across all key geographic locations. It can be accessed here.