Whether as a meal replacement or a protein-packed pick-me-up, jerky continues to entice customers as category innovation abounds. Convenience stores that focus attention on this category can become shopping destinations for meat snack lovers.
While most people are familiar with the beef jerky stick, meat snacks also come in strips, bites and steaks made from everything from turkey and chicken to salmon to mushroom to exotic wild game such as wild boar, buffalo, elk and ostrich.
Flavors include cracked black pepper, hickory-smoked, American and Korean barbecue, sriracha, teriyaki, bacon, cilantro and habanero with countless others entering the market just about every day. Keep track of what flavor profiles sell best in your stores — savory, sweet, spicy — and look for new products that fit the bill to keep customers excited and coming back.
In addition to the major players, keep an eye out for regional brands, which often have a fan base that will follow them to your stores. Work their hometown hero status into your promotions for these products.
Stores that offer a variety of forms and flavors are most likely to find jerky to be a stellar seller. Bag sizes are just as diverse from single-serve sticks to shareable bags. You can suggest upsizing by offering promotional value pricing or creating an eye-catching display. Bundling jerky with hot dispensed beverages and cold beverages at the fountain, coolers and beer cave is a proven way to encourage impulse purchases.
Jerky is generally regarded as a “better-for-you” snack when compared with other salty snack items such as potato chips and pretzels, and sweet snack items such as snack cakes, so it can be beneficial to promote its lean protein content and lower-calorie count. It is also one of the easiest and tastiest ways to quickly satisfy hunger on the go.
High visibility can also significantly boost sales. In addition to displays in the snack aisle and on end caps, showcase jerky in high-impulse areas by the beverage coolers, hot dispensed beverage area, deli and grab and go sandwich cases and at the cash registers.