I own a convenience store and branded gas station which is the first stop off a major highway with a daily traffic count of 97,000 cars.
I have space on my lot and am considering adding a pizza trailer to sell pizza by the slice.
My C-store is open 6am-11pm everyday, and the only food options at this exit are a McDonald’s and a Burger King. There are two other C-stores and Gas stations which I compete with directly, but they do not have the space on their property to set up a concession trailer, nor space inside to sell hot food.
There is also a BestWestern located at this exit.
Currently my C-Store sells to a lot of locals, and as far as pizza goes, they have a couple of options including a Dominoes and a local player. So I’m not counting on locals for a huge amount of business. This is mostly to draw Highway travellers. My state has a road sign program and I can get on highway food signs for $3K per year (two signs, one in each direction of the highway).
My questions: Will highway travellers buy pizza by the slice at a Gas Station location? Will they pay a premium for it ($2.50 per slice)?
I’m not a huge fan of “gas station pizza”, but in your situation I might be able to point you in a direction:
This is something you can do with almost no added expenses to yourself. Try it.
I think it will add a few bucks to your bottom line, but nothing huge.
Why not talk to the local guy about selling his pizza.
I’m sure he would be more than willing to hear you. 50/50 or something. You could get a small counter oven and small display. Cheaper than going the whole trailer route which I don’t think would get much sales. Inside the c store I think you can have a good deal of sales
If you are doing pretty good at the store, forget about it. Its too much work/stress for too little money.
Would you mind giving some details about your experience with Pizza in your C-Store.
where was your C-Store located: in large/med/small town? Suburban? Rural?
what was the immediate competitive environment? were you in a strip mall with other food options? were you a stand alone store with no competitors for miles?
Did you have gas pumps? were you selling branded or unbranded gas?
how would you describe your clientele? local workers stopping in for cigarettes? highway travellers stopping for refreshment? etc.
I’m asking alot, but I think understanding the causes of success and failure are important in order to reproduce the former and avoid the latter.
I have done a lot of research but actualy never opened a pizza in my store. A friend of mine built a brand new C store/gas station with pizza. he does about 10k mo. in pizza.
The way I look at it, it is too much work for too little money.
You need to put in a lot of your own time and effort when you are dealing with food it is a lot more labour intense than a c store.
A lot of my family owns pizzas. all of them wanna have my lifestyle. I can make my bank deposits on Friday and take off (visit them!) until Monday. something very hard to do with pizza (labour). food requires a lot more customer service thus hands on operater.
That was my take on pizza plus C store.
You can not sell pizza thru gas cashier.
The following figures are based on est. 80k mo. store sales.
Separate 500-600 sf. kitchen with cash register( independent operation) will do 9-12k if you have lunch crowd(slices) and residential in your demographics.
Independent operation with own entrance/exit with delivery should do 30k. given very good food or a franchise plus you gotta be in town. meaning local customer.
Freeway location is a big negative. you need lunch crowd(industry,local workers) and residential.
Gas volume/ brand does not matter. gassers generaly do not buy pizza unless they have no other choice.