Which C-Store Product Sales Will Spike During Super Bowl Week?

By Jessica Teague

Posted Feb 01, 2017

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Convenience stores across the nation should be preparing, as the second largest food consumption day is arriving. That’s right, Super Bowl Sunday is the second-largest U.S. food consumption day, only surpassed by Thanksgiving (Fox News).

With an increase in food and beverage consumption also comes an increase in purchases, which is good news for distributors and c-stores that plan accordingly. During the week leading up to Super Bowl 50 in 2016, the average fan spent $82.19 on food, decor and team apparel (Berr). This amount rose $4.31 from the previous year and is expected to continue to rise for 2017 as well.

A large portion of this money will be spent on food, drinks, and other household items that can be purchased in grocery or convenience stores. Tracking sales spikes resulting from the Super Bowl can be difficult for the convenience store line due to the lack of sales data insight. The location of convenience stores, being on every corner of America, should mean that last minute party grabs will bring customers flooding to their store. However what are they really grabbing, and what should you be stocking up on?

1) Pizza

It should be no surprise that Pizza is the #1 Super Bowl Party food (Menyes). A study conducted by Nielsen in 2015 showed that 46% of people planned on eating pizza while viewing the game. This is exciting news for both Dominos, and Pizza Hut, but the impact of pizza sales doesn’t stop there. An IRI study of convenience and grocery stores found that pizza sales increased in stores by 17% during Super Bowl week. This percentage increase is larger than well-known categories such as salty snacks and beer. CBS News found that in 2015 Americans spent $109 million on frozen pizza, therefore convenience store owners should stock up on the frozen pizza (Berr).

2) Ranch

Wings are the second most consumed food on Super Bowl Sunday just behind pizza. According to the National Chicken Council 2017 Wing Report, “Americans will eat 1.33 billion wings during Super Bowl LI weekend” (NCC). This figure is an increase of 30 million wings from last year! For c-stores with a chicken food service program, Super Bowl Sunday is an optimal time to promote availability at your location. With big wing sales also comes big wing dip sales. 57% of Americans who eat chicken wings say they like to dip them in ranch (Fox News). C-Stores in the North East should consider ordering extra bleu cheese dip as 50% of people in the North East like bleu cheese dip with their wings (Fox News).

3) Beer

As the Super Bowl approaches, the product on nearly every viewer’s mind is beer. It is no surprise that the IRI Sales Report found beer to be the category that generated the highest dollar sales during Super Bowl week. This study also showed that during this week beer sales increased by 12.64%, which seems like a surprisingly low percentage increase when compared to other categories such as dips.

Seeing as approximately 51.7 million cases of beer are sold on the day of the Super Bowl, convenience stores should prepare for a surge in sales (Fox News).

4) Salty Snacks

A study by Nielsen ranked salty snacks as the #1 ranked food for the Super Bowl in 2014, and last year Fox News ranked potato chips as the #3 most consumed food only behind pizza and wings (Russo). This decrease in popularity should not deter c-store owners from stocking their shelves because salty snacks are still the category with the greatest unit sales during Super Bowl week (IRI). This places them second only behind beer in overall dollar sales in grocery and convenience.

Trying to decide which salty snacks to stock up on? Here are consumption stats according to Fox News:

  • 11.2 million pounds of potato chips
  • 3.8 million pounds of popcorn
  • 4 million pounds of pretzels
  • 2.5 million pounds of nuts

5) All things Cookout

The Super Bowl is the second-biggest grilling weekend of the year, just behind the 4th of July (Fox News). This means that all things cookout see a large increase in percentage dollar sales during the week. The largest increase in sales when it comes to cookouts is barbecue sauce, which saw an increase of over 40% during Super Bowl week (IRI). Fire wood or fire starter surprises many by increasing sales by 27% (IRI). Thirdly, mayo increased by 2x more than mustard and ketchup. Other things to consider stocking up on are disposables, relish, frankfurters, and cheese.

6) Antiacid

As we’ve all experienced, with an increased consumption of beer and wings, also brings a surge in upset stomachs. In fact, about 5% (1.5 million) of Americans call in sick the Monday after the Super Bowl (Adamczyk). Convenience stores should still expect traffic as people come in to soothe their sickness. 7-Eleven, in particular, says that their antacid sales rose 20% the day after the Super Bowl (Tuttle).

Are you interested in having better insight into situational sales spikes in your convenience stores? Contact us here to learn more.