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    BONUS CONTENT: Region Influences C-store Shopping

    Consumers in the Northeast are the heaviest spenders at convenience stores.

    By Don Longo, Convenience Store News

    JERSEY CITY, N.J. -- Did you know that consumers in the Northeast are more likely to frequent convenience stores in the late night hours than shoppers in any other region of the nation? Did you also know that the heaviest users of c-store DVD rental kiosks reside in the West?

    These are just two of the regional differences uncovered by Convenience Store News' 2013 Realities of the Aisle consumer study. As bonus content in conjunction with our Consumer Insights Special Edition, which was published this month, CSNews examines the differences in how shoppers in the Northeast, South, Midwest and West utilize convenience stores.

    Northeast

    • 13.5 percent shop at a convenience store almost every day -- the highest regional frequency.
       
    • Most likely to go to a c-store to buy lottery tickets, newspapers/magazines, prepared food, food for at-home consumption and fill-in grocery items.
       
    • More late-night shoppers (after 10 p.m.) than the other regions.
       
    • In the past month, Northeast shoppers purchased the following items more often than the average: lottery tickets, hot beverages, prepared food, milk, newspapers, magazines, bottled/canned iced tea, ice cream and grocery items.
       
    • Heavy users of ATMs at c-stores.
       
    • Average spent (excluding gas) at last c-store visit: $14.28. (National average: $12.87.)
       
    • Median spent at last c-store visit: $9. (National median: $6.50.)

    South

    • 13.3 percent shop at a c-store almost every day -- the second highest regional frequency.
       
    • Most likely to go to a c-store to buy gasoline and use the restrooms.
       
    • Second-highest percentage of consumers who are shopping less at c-stores due to the economy.
       
    • In the past month, shoppers in the South purchased the following items more often than the average: gasoline, newspapers and beer/malt beverages.
       
    • Heavy users of car washes at c-stores.
       
    • Average spent at last c-store visit: $14.09.
       
    • Median spent at last c-store visit: $7.

    Midwest

    • Largest percentage (19.4 percent) shop two to three times per month at a c-store.
       
    • Most likely to go to a convenience store to buy beverages and gas.
       
    • Second-highest percentage (12.7 percent) of late-night shoppers; also the highest percentage of early morning shoppers (6 a.m. to 9 a.m.).
       
    • Highest percentage (31.1 percent) of shoppers who say they are shopping less at c-stores due to the economy.
       
    • In the past month, Midwest shoppers purchased the following items more often than the average: gas, canned/bottled soda, fountain drinks, prepared food, newspapers, beer/malt beverages, magazines and liquor.
       
    • Heavy users of ATMs at c-stores.
       
    • Average spent at last c-store visit: $10.77.
       
    • Median spent at last c-store visit: $5.

    West

    • Almost one-fifth (19.9 percent) shop two to three times per month at a c-store.
       
    • Most likely to go to a c-store to buy gas and beverages.
       
    • Most unaffected by the economy: 50.2 percent have made no change in c-store spending, while 19.3 percent are spending more.
       
    • In the past month, shoppers in the West purchased the following items more often than the average: fountain drinks, beer/malt beverages, meat snacks, grocery items, wine, liquor and electronic cigarettes.
       
    • Heavy users of DVD rental at c-stores.
       
    • Average spent at last c-store visit: $12.02.
       
    • Median spent at last c-store visit: $6.

    For more consumer insights, click here to read the full Convenience Store News Consumer Insights Special Edition.

    By Don Longo, Convenience Store News
    • About Don Longo Don Longo is editorial director of Stagnito Business Information's Convenience Store News, Convenience Store News for the Single Store Owner and Hispanic Retail 360 media brands. He has covered retailing for more than 30 years as a reporter, editor and publisher. Previously, he spearheaded the editorial efforts at a variety of business publications focused on mass, drug, grocery and specialty store retailing. Convenience Store News won American Business Media’s Jesse H. Neal Award for Best Issue of the Year in 2008 and 2012. Longo has won numerous other editorial awards over his career and is frequently quoted in the national and local news media on the subjects of retailing and consumer trends.
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