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People want much more from a forecourt than fuel and a good convenience offer. They want services too

Londis targets forecourt growth

Earlier this year as Londis announced the celebration of its 60th birthday, we heard how the symbol brand was doing better than ever, following three record-breaking years of sales growth and recruitment. The success had followed its acquisition by the Booker Group in 2015, along with sister brand Budgens.

Pump up your profits

Top 50 Indie the Kay Group has pump-top promotions at every one of its 20 sites. The company's retail convenience manager, Jacob Francis, says they provide a great opportunity to achieve incremental purchases from customers. DSL supplies the products and has done for around 20 years. Jacob says the range of products available has evolved from a time when everything was priced at under a fiver, to today when there are more premium lines that command higher prices of £19.99 and above.

The best of both

A recent visit to the Hammond Group's stunning Three Elm site in Tonbridge, Kent, filled with Co-op-branded products, prompted further investigation into the Southern Co-op's Welcome franchise.

Symbols of success

While talking about the Londis brand's 60th birthday earlier this year, Martin Swadling, Londis brand director, revealed that 49% of its retail stores are in the forecourt sector. The estate is a mixture of independent retailers and groups, but a huge chunk belongs to number one Top 50 Indie, MFG.

The cable guys

The size of the prize when it comes to the gadgets and gizmos category for forecourt retailers is huge, according to Craig Walker, operations director at Fifo. "Our top stores can turn over up to £1,000 per month in accessories alone," he says.

Pet potential

Today in the UK, 13 million households have a pet. Our pet population includes nine million dogs, eight million cats, 900,000 rabbits, 400,000 snakes and lizards, and 100,000 rats. Most owners will no doubt shop at specialist stores such as Pets at Home or buy their petcare items along with their supermarket shop. However, with so many forecourt stores today acting as the 'local' shop there are always distress purchases to cater for.

Brand leaders

Best-One in town

At the start of the year, Certas Energy reached agreement with Bestway Wholesale to be a preferred retail partner across its independent Gulf and Pace-branded sites. Six months before that, Top 50 Indie, Park Garage Group, also allied itself with Bestway Wholesale by signing an exclusive distribution agreement.

The name attraction

Filling up your car with fuel has got to be one of the dullest chores going. Distractions are there with pump-top offers, advertising on pump handles and sometimes, if you're lucky, digital screens with messaging, but that's about it. However, across the pond in North-east Ohio, drivers will soon be able to fill their cars while watching music videos thanks to the opening of the first ever Hard Rock-branded service station which is scheduled for September. Called the Rockstop Gas & Wash, it will feature a 3,500sq ft retail/car wash building and six double pumps with 12 nozzles. The pumps feature Hard Rock-style lighting effects and LED TVs for music videos and commercials. The forecourt will be adjacent to a Hard Rock casino aka Rocksino. It's not so much a brand alliance but more of a brand extension but it illustrates the power of branding and how this can be harnessed in the forecourt arena.

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Weekly retail fuel prices: 18 May 2020
RegionDieselLPGSuper ULUL
East112.4663.50123.15106.89
East Midlands112.21122.26106.78
London113.5664.90124.71108.57
North East110.8763.90125.50105.36
North West111.4965.90121.74106.55
Northern Ireland108.30111.90101.84
Scotland110.85121.31104.90
South East113.30122.65108.11
South West112.20120.84106.51
Wales110.67120.17104.73
West Midlands112.13125.92106.81
Yorkshire & Humber111.7057.70123.12106.23

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