Topics: Marketing & Retail

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

Truckstop Travels: Clearwater Petro Speaks to All the Senses

Wendy Johnson, vice president of operations for Clearwater Travel Plaza, and her team operate one fantastic travel center! The independent Petro franchise location, which is located northwest of Minneapolis and is owned by Joel Nelson, is filled with the traditional travel center amenities and products. Even better, this location also indulges all the senses. Your ears, your eyes and your sense of smell are treated to a smorgasbord of delights. My favorites are the hand-crafted sandwiches, the amazingly tasty homemade breads of many fanciful flavors and the exceptional bakery products. 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

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

Drive Extra Retail Sales at Your Truckstop on a Tax Free Day

As retailers it is important to have a holiday and seasonal retail/promotional program and participate in national holidays, which can be a sales driver. We often forget that our core customer and others who spend the majority of their time on our nation’s interstates and highways are starved for time when it comes to purchasing items for their loved ones gifts for that special occasion and or holiday. In my past, a robust holiday, one-day sale, summer drive and tax-free retail/promotional program all played a role in driving incredible retail sales through the coffers. Sales folks still today would have a hard time believing it had they not experienced it themselves. And, by the way, did I say tax-free day? More

Ten Questions for Your Own Domestic Study Tour

Learning from your peers is a great opportunity for operators to find new ideas to help improve the performance of their businesses. NATSO has hosted a number of Domestic Study Tours that combine tours of premier retail locations and networking opportunities with other innovative operators. The 2016 NATSO Domestic Study Tour will take place in September 14 – 15 at Fairfield BP, Lee Hi Travel Plaza and White's Travel Plaza near Lexington, Virginia. (These tours always sell out. I would encourage you to register soon as the feedback has been phenomenal.) For the ultimate study tour experience, I encourage you to join us. But, you can also craft your own mini study tour by keeping your eyes out for certain things every time you enter a competitor’s location. You could even pick a day to visit a handful of locations and compare their operations while searching for your own great ideas. Here are 10 sets of questions to ask yourself during your own, mini study tour. More

Five Fascinating Facts About NATSO Check-Link [Infographic]

Did you know, NATSO Check-Link is NATSO's longest-standing program? See the blog post to learn four more fascinating facts that you may not know about NATSO Check-Link. More

Top Ten New Truckstop and Travel Plaza Products of 2016

We at DAS are pleased to announce the top ten NEW products as voted on by retailers at the 2016 DAS Travel Center show. More