Tips to Bring in More Coffee Drinkers

Consider different times of day, different variations

Published in CSP Daily News

Tips for Convenience Stores to Bring in More Coffee Drinkers

TEMPLE, Texas -- For most coffee drinkers, the first beverage consumed in the morning is a cup of coffee. In fact, 68% of coffee drinkers drink one cup within the first hour of waking up, according to a recent McLane Co. newsletter. And with 54% of the U.S. population over the age of 18 consuming coffee every day, the convenience store distributor is confident sales will continue to climb.

The convenience store industry recently reported its highest coffee sales in five years, McLane reported in its most recent Ask a Category Manager newsletter, citing a CSP Daily News report. Net coffee sales for 2012 were more than $2.85 billion, according to a report by Study Logic, Long Island, N.Y. With 65% of coffee drinkers adding a flavor, creamer or sugar to their coffee, a varied selection of flavorings, sweeteners and creamers is a true necessity for a viable coffee bar.

For the retailer, it is important to consider what types of coffee you are brewing and also when you are brewing them, McLane reported. There is not just one typical coffee consumer, so it is important to offer different styles of coffee to meet consumer needs and make sure that it’s fresh and hot when it counts.

Breakfast represents 65% of coffee consumption in the U.S., and 30% is consumed between meals, McLane reported. This statistic shows that, even though coffee is consumed most in the morning, there is a need to keep the pot hot in the afternoon. A retailer must track and determine what times are best for their region and make coffee available during those times, McLane stated.

Traditional coffee will always be a focus of many retailers; however iced coffee is one of the fastest-growing segments in the category. According to the NPD Group, Americans consumed 300 million servings of iced coffee in 2001, and by 2012, that number increased to 1.2 billion servings. While 52% of all iced coffee servings are consumed by Americans between the ages of 25 and 49, women make up 64%, according to NPD. With these statistics, retailers should continue offering a variety of coffee to their customers. Brewing a simple cup of coffee is no longer the solution to capturing the needs of the true coffee drinker. Variety is key to bringing in new customers and growing the overall business.