There have been a great many studies done on the demographics that frequent convenience stores. We know facts about the shoppers but let's look at how they shop and why. Age, gender, location, and ethnicity are important in some regards, but many of customers' habits and reason's for shopping will spill over the lines of these demographics.
Retail Customer Experience did an excellent article on 4 different kinds of convenience stores shoppers. Here are the types they found:
1. Mr. Jones
Mr. Jones is your regular. These people come to satisfy their daily habits. This could be anything from a morning donut or cup of joe to kick off their day, to a daily soda and a candy bar. They are brand loyal and are likely to get the same thing every time they come in, looking for immediate satisfaction and a means to an end.
2. The Neighbor
These customers are regulars like Mr. Jones, but their reasons for coming are more of a tradition than a means to an end. They treat the convenience store they visit frequently like a community center. They know the associates on a first name basis and are there for the experience and social interaction. Familiarity and a good experience is what they're most interested in.
3. The Last Minute Shopper
This is the customer that has a need and wants a quick fix. They're likely on their way home, searching for something very specific that they'll need that night. They don't spend time looking around or striking a conversation at the register. Their goal is to get in and out as soon as possible, and the longer their visit takes the more uncomfortable they are.
4. The Thrillseeker
This is the least predictable group of customers. They look to be entertained, always wanting something new. They drift from brand to brand looking for a change; something unique, personal, and exciting and they'll try just about anything once. Keeping them engaged is a worthy challenge and every marketer's opportunity.
Seeking out the needs and intents of your customers is imperative to properly leveraging your marketing strategies.