SILVER'S TRAVEL CENTER HITS THE MARK WITH A RE-BRANDING

When Silver’s Travel Cen­ter rebranded its c-store location by franchising with On The Run by Circle K, it brought a new atmosphere to the store and led to a 15 percent increase in sales, which is particularly impres­sive because it is a down market.

Ron Hicks, general manager of Sil­ver's Travel Center, Henderson Trav­el Center and Frog City Travel Plaza, attributes the boost to the remodel and the improved merchandising mix that he can take advantage of as a franchisee. Because Circle K has more than 7,500 stores worldwide, the company knows what sells and has buying power Silver’s couldn’t have achieved on its own.

As part of the rebranding, the location underwent architectural changes and repositioned the point-of-sale. It also took down the cen­ter island and segregated the c-store from the trucker store. Hicks said it is more open now and is designed to flow with the customer, which makes shoppers notice products more than they have in the past.

Before the remodel, the roller grill at the location didn’t have much success. But as part of the remodel, the loca­tion created a food area and depart­mentalized it. It makes a huge differ­ence when like products are grouped together. With the new positioning of the roller grill, Hicks said he can’t keep it full. Plus, the roller grill program is about much more than throwing hot dogs on the grill. It has procedures and policies to ensure the products are always fresh, and they have par­ticular types of condiments, which all lead to a robust program.

Silvers also offers a variety of hot foods and cold foods, all single serve. They’ve added fresh sandwiches and an open cooler, which has been a success. Fresh fruit and cheese snacks are also selling well and appealing to those that want a healthier option. Even though they have a restaurant in that location, they realize it is a different customer base stopping for grab-and-go foods.

The location has also placed dif­ferent grab-and-go items around the counter because that appeals to a different customer base. The truck driver may not go over to the hot­dog program, so they have pizza and chicken waiting right on the counter.

Their grab-and-go food program is supported by a robust coffee, iced tea and fountain program. The cof­fee program has really taken off, and the location has done a phenomenal job positioning the coffee. They put a banner in the back that allows the sun to come through it. When the sun is rising, it is spectacular and makes for a powerful impact.

The cooler space has stayed the same, but it seems much larger. They added LED lighting and cat­egorized the coolers, putting like products together. If you go into that store and you want to get an orange juice, you know where it is.

Hicks said the remodel hasn’t tak­en away sales in other areas of the location and has created a boost in local traffic.

What’s more, since the remodel, all of the employees and custom­ers seem happier. The changes have added so much to the overall atmo­sphere of the store, adding to its overall success.

 

Darren Schulte, NATSO vice president of membership, frequently visits NATSO members to review their locations and offers impactful merchandising and operations improvements. Contact Schulte at dschulte@natso.com or (915) 526-5820 to learn more about the costs and details of this service. 



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