The 7-Eleven stores are ubiquitous, appearing in almost every town and city in America. Some consider them to be the “me-too’” stores of the convenience world, offering the same products as other fast-food chains, with the same limited options for meals and snacks. Is the iconic fast-food chain really just like all the others?
The answer is yes and no. On one hand, 7-Eleven does indeed offer a limited variety of products. On the other, 7-Eleven does indeed offer a unique combination of products geared to meet the demands of their customers.
Variety Is The Key To Standing Out
As with any other business, competition is fierce in the fast-food industry. In order to stand out from the crowd, businesses must offer something new and different. This certainly can be the case with 7-Eleven, who have created something of a cult following by offering a wide variety of products and services. If you visit their website, you’ll find everything from traditional snacks, like potato chips and french fries, to frozen foods, to deserts, to sandwiches, to smoothies, and even fresh-made sushi.
When it comes to customer satisfaction, variety is critical. A 2015 study from the MarketingCharts website found that customers are twice as likely to recommend a brand or store that offers a wide variety of products, regardless of whether or not the variety is superior to other options.
Make It Easy
When we think about fast-food, what immediately comes to mind is probably the golden arches and the familiar red-orange color. What if I told you there is more to fast food than burgers, chicken nuggets, and fish? What if I told you there is a way to make your fast food healthier? What if I told you there was a way to make it more eco-friendly? What if I told you there was a way to make it more local and sustainable?
These questions may seem far-fetched, but in 2020, they’re questions that 7-Eleven is answering with purpose. In 2020, 7-Eleven is taking a completely different approach to what they do best, and they’re doing it with a bang.
A Fresh Take On A Traditional Business Model
In 2019, 7-Eleven introduced their SpeedZone program, a fresh take on a traditional business model. Instead of focusing on large-scale retail, they’ve chosen to partner with local bakers, winemakers, and other local businesses to offer everyday items like cupcakes, tarts, and pies, all baked fresh in store.
Speaking of which, did you know that one of the main ingredients in a cupcake is ground nuts? While many bakeries use nuts or almond flour as a filler, 7-Eleven offers a unique take on the cupcake, using actual pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and pecans, along with other types of nuts and chocolate. Not only does this add a whole new level of flavor to the dessert, but it also helps to make them a little healthier.
When it comes to food products and ingredients, all natural is the new black. More and more consumers are demanding products and services that are free from chemicals and artificial elements, so businesses must follow suit.
As you’d imagine, a large portion of 7-Eleven’s fresh, seasonal products are all natural, too. Their signature sandwich, the Big Bite, is a prime example of their commitment to sustainable practices, boasting a tomato, lettuce, and pickle sandwich with a beef or turkey patty, an ingredient usually sourced from traceable and sustainable sources. Other sandwiches and wraps made with all-natural chicken, fish, or vegetable options include the California-style BBQ, the Ultimate Ham, and the Garden Fresh.
If you’ve ever shopped at 7-Eleven, you may have noticed the wide array of craft beers, organic sodas, and other types of drinks available for purchase. Did you know that a Big Gulp of soda costs the same as a small one? Well, now you do. Is the convenience of a large drink more important to you than your health? If so, you might be interested in a newly launched water program, called Hydration Station. At Hydration Station, you can drink as much water as you want, when you want, for a limited time. You simply place your order at the register, and within minutes, your drink will be ready. This program is ideal for someone who, for personal or health reasons, needs to stay hydrated. The convenience of having a refreshing drink on hand is unmatched, as you’ll soon discover trying out the Hydration Station app, where you can place your order and receive a notification when your drink is ready.
Did you know that paper straws aren’t just used for drinks, but they’re also designed to be biodegradable and compostable? If not, it’s time you should have heard about them, as paper straws are quickly becoming a thing of the past, replaced by more sustainable options.
In April of 2020, 7-Eleven will be phasing out their plastic straws and utensils, completely replacing them with vegan alternatives. Businesses that become more eco-friendly are more likely to see a boost in customer loyalty and repeat business. Not only that, but customers are more likely to be satisfied with a business that is aware of and committed to sustainability.
When it comes to the economy and sustainability, many business owners, CEOs, and other leaders are realizing the importance of supporting local businesses and industries, as well as those that offer sustainable products and packaging. Did you know that many foods, such as strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries, are grown locally and sustainably? If not, it’s time you should have found out, as these products are available in many grocery stores and even some restaurants, bars, and eateries that serve organic foods and beverages. In the coming months, many businesses will be introducing and promoting their local products, seeking to establish a presence in a previously untapped market. For example, in the coming months, some Hooters restaurants will be holding a special day where all the food served is grown within a 100-mile radius of the restaurant. They’re hoping to encourage patrons to adopt a more sustainable lifestyle by demonstrating how easily they can have products delivered fresh, per their request, straight to their tables. If you’re curious about trying out some of these products, be sure to check out the brands websites, as they often have special offers and promotions, geared toward encouraging you to try out their products.
More Than Meets The Eye
When you’re browsing through 7-Eleven’s website, you’ll notice that beyond the usual assortment of snacks, burgers, and other food items, the site also features a variety of activities, like paintball, mini-golf, and even a climbing wall. Did you know that there is also an Apple Store, a Starbucks, and a Tiffany’s across the street from each other, and all within a ten-minute walk of each other? Apparently, this intersection is a popular hangout for people who work there, as well as for anyone who needs a little break from their busy schedules.
If you think that having a wide variety of products and services, all offered by a single business, is unique to 7-Eleven, think again. In the coming months, you’ll begin to see an increase in the number of businesses trying to emulate 7-Eleven’s approach to building a profitable brand. What makes this beverage chain so successful is that they offer a unique combination of products and services, making it easier for customers to find what they want and need, when they want and need it.