April 16, 2024

What Would You Do If You Owned A Gas Station?

The number of gas stations has been in decline for four decades, maybe longer.

Those that stayed in business did stuff like Casey's General Store did ... convenience grocery, pizza, fried chicken, you get the picture.

So yeah, those that stayed in business decided to siphon off some of the Twinkies and Fritos and Large Pepsi drinks sold by other folks.

Of course, if you run a gas station, there is a cliff that your business model is eventually going to plunge into.

  • Electric Vehicles.

What do you do when the customer charges his/her car at home instead of purchasing gas at a Casey's?

I get it, this transition isn't happening overnight.

And I get it, if your gas station is at the interchange of I-10 and I-8, you'll likely stay in business no matter what happens to cars ... you have too many cars whizzing by.

How about the gas station two blocks off of the Interstate Highway, a gas station that is nearly identical to the gas station two blocks off of the Interstate Highway one mile in either direction? This is the gas station that derives business from the individual running chores locally, needing gas a few times a month. Now this customer charges at home. And if a customer does charge at your gas station ... assuming you make the million dollar or more investment to put in charging stations that charge a car in 20-30 minutes, does the customer want to stare at $7 half-gallons of chocolate milk for a half-hour? No! Which means you need to remodel your store to potentially look more like the lounge at the local Toyota dealership where customers wait for their brake fluid to be drained and replaced (#highgrossmargins). That will also cost money, with no guarantee of a return on investment.

What do you do?

Almost every decision you are required to make is expensive ... and there is zero guarantee that your decisions will work. In other words ... you can't just sit there and do nothing, but doing something is awful.

This translates to your business. Amazon is mulching e-commerce brands, with paper/printing/postage vendors well on their way to causing an outcome where one cataloger mails a billion pieces per year that cost $27.00 each to produce.

What do you do?

You can't just sit there and do nothing.

Think carefully about gas stations, and how gas stations relate to your challenges, ok?

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