C-Stores’ Technology Priorities Shifted due to Pandemic​

Amid this pandemic, a new study has shown how convenience stores have shifted their innovation needs. According to a Censuswide done by Zynstra, 63% of the respondents said that the framework held them back from rapidly making any required changes to adjust their store operations.

Technology has taken an overwhelming focus and attention at c-stores.  Eighty-one percent of c-store retailers said that COVID—19 has raised the role IT plays in the eyes of executive decision-makers.  Sixty-four percent of the participants in the survey firmly believed that they need to change their technology in accordance with the consumers’ behaviors.

Technological advancement has slow progress due to the speed, cost, and complexity of IT.  Below is a list of main IT challenges convenience stores faced during the pandemic:

  • 44% said the speed of adoption of new technology
  • 43% said the cost of new devices
  • 40% said the complexity of the manual order process for takeaway due to third-party integrations
  • 36% the cost of maintaining IT equipment and systems
  • 33% said the speed of deploying new technology and devices with the legacy system
  • Only 2% said there were no IT challenges

Furthermore, portable technology is a necessity for c-stores.  However, c-stores said there are certain technologies that they are unable to implement in response to the pandemic due to the legacy technology:

  • 33% mobile payment apps
  • 31% home delivery/takeaway
  • 29% self-checkout
  • 28% mobile point of sale (POS) tablets
  • 28% mobile pay at the pump

“In parallel, the rapid changes in consumer buying habits due to social distancing, such as curbside collection, full-service fueling, click and collect, home delivery, grab and go and more, continue to place pressure on convenience fuel retail businesses’ bottom line,” said Nick East, co-founder and CEO of Zynstra.

Source: NACS

By: Kimsreng Lay