New fuel for growth

HIM’s Forecourt Tracking Programme suggests there are significant growth opportunities in store for forecourts. John Wood reports.

One of the most striking trends highlighted by HIM’s report is the decline in the importance of fuel to forecourt, with the proportion of customers who buy only fuel falling from 52% in 2011 to 37% in 2014, and 13% of shoppers at forecourt stores don’t even have a car.

Blake Gladman, senior research manager at HIM, says: “Increasingly developed shopping habits and an ever-demanding need from shopper for convenient and relevant solutions to fit in with the working week has led to a blurring of channels on the high street, such as discounters stepping into convenience, and supermarkets becoming food-to-go outlets. This trend can be seen on the forecourts too. Fewer shopers are visiting petrol stations for fuel only. This is being driven by a change in fuel consumption habits but also by the increasing demand for food and drinks to-go.”

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