Topics: Great Ideas

Great Idea in Action: Bobby Bucks

White’s Petro Stopping Center in Raphine, Virginia, has its own currency—Bobby Bucks. More

Great Idea in Action: New Employee Buttons

To help take some of the stress off of new cashiers and set customers’ expectations, Wade has new hires wear big yellow buttons that say, “Be patient. I am in training.” More

Getting Your Truckstop Noticed on Google Maps

Not long ago, I started uploading photos of the NATSO member locations I visit to Google Maps, and today those photos have gotten more than 1 million views! Adding photos to Google Maps is one way to shape the first impression your customers see when they search for your location specifically or simply a place to stop. More

Replace an Unproductive Restaurant in Your Truckstop with One of These 15 Creative Offerings

Over time, certain profit centers can fail to produce the same margins they once did. Many in our industry are experiencing this with sit-down restaurants. Priorities for both professional and passenger drivers’ have shifted what today’s consumers are seeking out. For truckstop and travel plaza operators replacing an unproductive restaurant with another food option or service offering can bring a boost in sales. Here are 15 ideas for transforming space within your location. More

Four Ways to Make the Most of End Caps at Your Truckstop

End caps are prime real estate within a truckstop and they need to say “Bam, buy me!” To maximize the effectiveness of end caps, make sure they: More

How to See Your Truckstop with Fresh Eyes

We all know that curb appeal is important, and now new surveys show that two thirds of customers will not come into your operation if the curb appeal is not positive and inviting. But often times, we need to look at our locations with fresh eyes and see our operation in the same way a customer does. The next time you pull into your truckstop or travel plaza, pretend you’re a customer stopping for the first time. Take a good look at your location for these things. More

Seven Tips for Selling at Your Truckstop's Transaction Counter

Your transaction counter is one of the most important touch points that you have in your operation. It is frequently the first and last thing your customers see upon entering and leaving your operation. It is valuable and every single truckstop and travel plaza should treat it as premium space. Here are seven thoughts to consider when choosing what to put in that space. More

Flags and Family at Ports to Plains Members Only Join or Login

If you drove up to Ports to Plains truckstop, located in Lamar, Colorado, the first thing you’d probably notice is their big American flag. “We have a 20-foot by 30-foot American flag out front and a dozen American flags around the facility,” said owner Jim Miller. More

Wawa Great Idea: Coffee and Cream and Sugar Stations

Wawa coffee is a proprietary, private-label blend available only at Wawa stores. Wawa’s coffee station includes at least eight different varieties. In 2010 they changed their coffee from glass pots to thermals, and in 2012, Wawa began offering a full-service specialty beverage area where customers can order hand-made varieties of lattes, hot chocolates and more via touch screens. Since the year 2000, Wawa has served more than one billion cups of coffee. More

Ten Ways to Convert More Truckstop Customers and Serve Them Faster

In our industry speed is crucial, especially as we face increased competition from c-stores and restaurants that are vying for our customers. New super c-stores are dotting the interstates with amazing grab-and-go food programs. Although they offer limited amenities and limited parking, they sell over-the-road diesel. They are also experts at moving customers in and out of the operations effectively and efficiently. So how do we turn these cost center situations into profit centers? How do we improve our conversion rates thus improving our net operating cost? When you step back and look at all these changes and increased competition impacting our business universe, they are all about speed of activity/event and the ability to go longer and further, which in effect also increase efficiency and speed. So what are truckstops and travel plazas supposed to do? Embrace speed! Embrace the need to be different because your customer is different and will continue to evolve. Here are 10 actionable items you can do to improve the speed of your customers while increasing conversion rates. More