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NATSO Blog: Truckstop Business

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NATSO Connect Coca Cola Presentation Shares Signage & Product Positioning Ideas to Boost Beverage Sales

Posted in: Truckstop Business

Those within the truckstop and travel plaza industry know that beverages and the cold vault make up a significant portion of travel plaza and truckstop sales, and research from Coca-Cola shows that beverages are often the catalyst for a stop in the first place.

“Beverages are the No. 1 reason for a trip to the store and account for more than one in four trips,” said J.T. McMahan, senior sales manager for Coca-Cola. McMahan made the remarks while sharing the latest innovate research from the beverage powerhouse during a presentation at NATSO Connect 2018.

However, 74 percent of gas customers leave without buying anything, which makes it important to find ways to capture their attention.

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NATSO Staff Share Product Mix Tips at AMBEST

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

Stocking the right product mix is central to not only meeting customers’ needs but also growing sales. NATSO has created a Product Mix To-Go Toolkit to help truckstop and travel plaza operators identify the right products for their locations.

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Maximize Your Vendor Relationships and Product Sales with These Three Tips from NATSO Connect

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

Vendors are valuable partners can help truckstop and travel plaza operators learn more about industry trends, category performance and promotional plans. During NATSO Connect 2018’s Good-to-Great Workshop, Darren Schulte, NATSO’s vice president of membership, shared several ways operators can get the most out of their vendor relationships.

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Four Ways to Improve Employee Retention Shared During NATSO Connect

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Human Resources

Retaining top employees not only improves customer service and overall morale, it can save money, too. It costs about $4,000 every time an employee walks out the door, with employers having to pay to recruit new hires, fill the spot and train new employees.

“If you keep your employee, you keep your money,” said Heather Meade, a consultant with Ernst & Young and a leader of NATSO’s HR Share Group. Meade and Ernst & Young’s Tara Bradshaw spoke during NATSO Connect 2018 and shared several concrete ideas for retaining top talent.

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Five Food-Service Lessons From NATSO Connect 2018

Posted in: Truckstop Business, The NATSO Show, Operations

Food and fuel are two of the top things truckstops and travel plazas are known for, and an effective food-service program takes work. During NATSO Connect 2018, food expert Michael Ouimet of Ouimet Consulting Group shared his expertise during the Good to Great Workshop. Here are five quick tips he shared during the event.

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Three Categories of Products RVs Need at Your Truckstop Right Now

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

We typically associate warm summer months with camping and road trips, but you might be surprised at the number of RVs hitting the highways around the holidays. In addition to those who travel and live in their RVs full-time and the predictable caravan of snowbirds traveling south for the New Year, the holidays also provide a great excuse for more casual users to drag their rig out for vacation or bring their own accommodations when visiting family and friends. Now is a good time to promote the RV-friendly products you sell year round, as well as some holiday- and cold-weather specific ones.

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Busy Bee is On-Point with Apparel

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

Apparel can be a lucrative profit center for NATSO members that invest in the category. Elizabeth Waring, president of Johnson & Johnson Inc., which operates Busy Bee locations, sat down with NATSO to share her thoughts on how she is making the most of apparel and the value it brings to her customers.

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Holiday Retail Sales are Important: Nine Ideas for What Your Truckstop Could Stock for the Holidays

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

As I type this we have 56 days until Christmas. If you have not ordered your LED Christmas Lights for drivers to hang on their trucks you may already be out of luck. What about that bag with a handful of charcoal briquettes inside strategically placed on the counter and sold for a buck or so? Everyone loves to get a bag of coal for Christmas. If you do not have Christmas and other holiday gifts and products in the store already, get on the phone now and get them ordered.

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Holiday Retail Sales Are Important at Truckstops Too

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

I had the pleasure in the past three weeks to visit with owners and managers of a combination of 18 new and current member locations. I saw awesome stores with a lot of exciting happenings. I was, however, surprised to see how few of the operations had yet to prepare for the Halloween holiday let alone Christmas. We will talk Christmas on the next blog.

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6 More Tips to Better Serve RV Customers at Your Truckstop

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

After a NATSO member asked me how she could drive more RV traffic to her travel center, I sat down with a friend who has spent the better part of four years and accumulated more than 100,000 miles traveling the country in a diesel-powered pickup towing a 30-foot travel trailer to learn more about his life on the road.

He shared his experiences and made some recommendations for how truckstops and travel plazas could better serve RVers.

He had a lot of great stuff to share! Here are seven more recommendations on how to attract and serve RV traffic.

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