7-Eleven’s new store in Dallas, called 7-Eleven Lab Store, features tacos, novelty drinks on tap, in-store seating and Scan & Pay technology.
The company calls the store “an experiential testing ground, where customers can try and buy the retailer’s latest innovations in a revolutionary new store format.”
The lab store is also the first 7-Eleven location to incorporate the Laredo Taco Company, famous in South Texas for its handmade tortillas and salsa bar.
7-Eleven acquired the taqueria along with Stripes convenience stores in South Texas as part of the 1,000-store acquisition from Sunoco in 2018.
“The industry is changing at a faster rate than ever before,” said Chris Tanco, 7-Eleven executive vice president and chief operating officer. “This new lab store will serve as a place to test, learn and iterate new platforms and products to see what really resonates with customers and how we can use those learnings to influence future store designs.”
Features of the new store include:
- made-to-order coffee drinks, cold-pressed juices, smoothies and agua frescas
- novelty beverages on tap such as nitro cold brew, kombucha and organic teas
- an expanded selection of wines and craft beers, with a growler station and a rotating selection of local craft beer and cider on tap
- a cold treats bar with frozen yogurt, ice cream and toppings
- pastries baked-in-store daily
- Scan & Pay technology and other digital initiatives
- indoor, patio and bar seating
“A lot has changed in retail and continues to change rapidly, especially the shopping experience,” Tanco said. “This lab store is customer-focused and will explore new ideas that weren’t even on the retail radar a few months ago.”
Based in Irving, Texas, 7-Eleven operates, franchises and/or licenses more than 67,000 stores in 17 countries, including 11,800 in North America.
According to Eater, 7-Eleven plans to open at least five other “lab stores” in cities like Washington, D.C. and San Diego.