Stop Watch Articles

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Try Putting Your Manager’s Office in the Middle of Your Truckstop

May 1, 2018

Try Putting Your Manager’s Office in the Middle of Your Truckstop

Home Service Oil Co., doing business as Express Mart, St. Louis, Missouri, has their managers’ “offices” in the center of its convenience stores.

Everything is Extra Nice at Danny's Big Rig Resort

May 1, 2018

Everything is Extra Nice at Danny's Big Rig Resort

If you are wondering if Danny’s Big Rig Resort in Phoenix, Arizona, is a truckstop or a resort, the answer is both. “It is a truckstop for owner operators with money. If you’re trying to get something for a discounted price, this isn’t the right spot,” explains the owner, Vicki Hendon.

Expand Your Truckstop's Labor Pool with Non-Traditional Hires

May 1, 2018

Expand Your Truckstop's Labor Pool with Non-Traditional Hires

Finding and retaining employees is often a top concern of truckstop and travel plaza operators, and it can become even more challenging when unemployment levels drop.

Get to Know Female Leaders in the Truckstop Industry

May 1, 2018

Get to Know Female Leaders in the Truckstop Industry

The truckstop and travel plaza industry is full of outstanding operators who continually make life easier for their customers. Throughout 2018, Stop Watch would like to highlight a handful of the women who make the industry great.

Maximizing the Path to Purchase at Your Truckstop with Beverages

May 1, 2018

Maximizing the Path to Purchase at Your Truckstop with Beverages

Beverages are big business for the nation’s truckstops and travel plazas. During NATSO Connect, Stephanie Kowitz, senior manager of shopper Insights for The Coca-Cola Co., said beverages are the No. 1 reason for a trip to the store and account for more than one in four trips.

Boost Sales and Reward Customers with Loyalty Programs at Your Truckstop

May 1, 2018

Boost Sales and Reward Customers with Loyalty Programs at Your Truckstop

Repeat customers are extremely valuable to businesses, and when done right, loyalty programs can draw in shoppers while also boosting sales for the location. That creates a win/win situation for customers as well as the businesses they frequent.

Decrease Shrink to Increase Profitability at Your Truckstop [Infographic]

May 1, 2018

Decrease Shrink to Increase Profitability at Your Truckstop [Infographic]

Retail losses can add up to big bucks for operators, and any net operating cost improvement plan should include a robust plan to manage retail and cost shrink.

The Omnibus Spending Bill: Reading the Fine Print for Truckstops

May 1, 2018

The Omnibus Spending Bill: Reading the Fine Print for Truckstops

In late March, Congress passed and President Trump signed a massive $1.3 trillion spending bill. The 2,232-page piece of legislation contained a plethora of policy changes that are important to fuel marketers. There were also a number of policy changes that were not included in the legislation that would have impacted the marketing community.

Strategic Plans Help Us Stay Focused And Move Forward

May 1, 2018

Strategic Plans Help Us Stay Focused And Move Forward

As an association, NATSO is tasked with bringing value to our members and our partners, and to ensure we continue to do that, NATSO’s board of directors and staff have been working together on the association’s long-term strategic plan.

Finding and Fostering Great Ideas with NATSO

March 1, 2018

Finding and Fostering Great Ideas with NATSO

As both consumers and business owners and many of us have seen that the pace of change is accelerating. Technology is changing, the retail experience is changing and our customers are changing. That means we must observe the trends and innovate to remain relevant. Finding and applying great ideas has become so important, especially as our pool of competitors has grown. We’re not just competing with other truckstops for both customers and staff, we’re competing with every retail outlet.

Guthrie Travel Center Uses Movable Placards for Signage Excellence

March 1, 2018

Guthrie Travel Center Uses Movable Placards for Signage Excellence

If you look over Guthrie Travel Center in Guthrie, Oklahoma, from left to right—from the cooler to the coffee area—you’d see they’ve done a nice job highlighting their offerings with signage and that includes the movable placards over their coolers.

A Fresh Look And Unique Offerings Bring In Customers At Frog City

March 1, 2018

A Fresh Look And Unique Offerings Bring In Customers At Frog City

Frog City Travel Plaza in Rayne, Louisiana, is a favorite destination stop for truckers, travelers and locals, and it is drawing them in with multiple food offerings, unique items and its local flair. Grego Barro, owner and operator of the location, is keeping Frog City fresh and beautiful with a recent c-store renovation and new gas pumps, and he focuses on customer service.

Attract Truckstop Customers Through Signage

March 1, 2018

Attract Truckstop Customers Through Signage

Signage is one of the most important tools to connect with customers. It not only attracts customers from the street and draws them into the location, but also communicates sales or promotions, spurs point-of-sale purchases and directs customers where to go.

Berkstresser Honored with NATSO Hall of Fame Award

March 1, 2018

Berkstresser Honored with NATSO Hall of Fame Award

When Bobby Berkstresser got started in the truckstop industry 36 years ago, he had never pumped fuel before and hadn’t planned to become one of the largest employers in his town. Instead, he was looking for a garage for his towing service. The owner of Lee Hi was getting ready to close the location and called and asked Berkstresser if he’d like to buy it.

Five Trends Shaping the Future of the Truckstop Industry

March 1, 2018

Five Trends Shaping the Future of the Truckstop Industry

The truckstop and travel plaza industry as well as the retail world continues to evolve, and major changes in technology and consumer demand are shaking up the future for operators. During the Opening Keynote of NATSO Connect, Feb. 10–13 in Nashville, Tenn., attendees learned about five key trends that are shaping the future of the industry.

Get to Know Women Leading the Way in the Travel Plaza Industry

March 1, 2018

Get to Know Women Leading the Way in the Travel Plaza Industry

The truckstop and travel plaza industry is full of outstanding operators who continually make life easier for their customers. Throughout 2018, Stop Watch would like to highlight a handful of the women who make the industry great. “We have amazing women involved in the truckstop and travel plaza industry,” said Darren Schulte, vice president of membership for NATSO. “They provide valuable leadership and very often the key issues they’re concerned about and the little touches they bring to their locations are what make them stand out.”

Find Success at Your Truckstop with Multiple Fuel Buying Techniques

March 1, 2018

Find Success at Your Truckstop with Multiple Fuel Buying Techniques

Fuel buying has continued to get more sophisticated, and the current combination of demand, supply, terminal operating status and rack price rules have created a complicated equation for truckstop and travel plazas to navigate. To be successful, operators have to stay current on prices and trends and combine fuel buying techniques, many of which may be different than they’ve used in the past.

Creativity and Innovation Lead the Way at Mach 1

January 1, 2018

Creativity and Innovation Lead the Way at Mach 1

At Mach 1 innovation is key, and Alan Meyer, chief operations officer for the company, said he is always willing to try something new, even if it ultimately fails.

Spur Impulse Buys with the Right Product Placement and Mix

January 1, 2018

Spur Impulse Buys with the Right Product Placement and Mix

Everyone is starved for times these days, but customers at truckstops and travel plazas are in even more of a hurry than most. They are looking to get in and out of the location quickly and aren’t hanging around to shop. That means last-minute purchases are a key component of truckstop and travel plaza sales. There are several ways store operators can drive impulse buys.

2017 Year In Review

January 1, 2018

2017 Year In Review

JANUARY The NATSO Show Travel plaza and truckstop operators and industry vendors meet in Savannah, Georgia, Jan. 21–24 for The NATSO Show 2017.

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