When considering a beer cave, one of the chief considerations is space, but how much space is needed depends on a lot of factors.
One design expert shared with CStore Decisions that for a 4,500-square-foot convenience store, retailers would be looking at a standard eight-foot by 16-foot beer cave as the starting point, but other factors can determine if the beer cave size should go up or down in size from there.
The goal is to examine the opportunity your store has for beer and build a beer cave that will help your store reach its peak opportunity in the category. This might look different depending on your market, the type of beer you sell and the overall potential for your location.
There are other space considerations as well. For example, some retailers assume they can remove a few cooler doors and place the beer cave there, but cooler doors are a highly profitable area for convenience stores and removing them to fit a beer cave can cause revenue declines. It’s often best to consider the beer cave as an addition to your existing cooler section.
What’s more, typical coolers are also not designed like beer caves, which traditionally require space for a high ceiling. And those coolers might not be positioned in the optimal place for a beer cave. A properly positioned beer cave can draw customers into your store. So, retailers not only need to consider the required square feet, but also how to create space in an ideal spot within the store both in terms of height as well as width and depth.
Also, today’s modern beer caves don’t look much like caves at all. They are often all-glass rooms that are angled — a feature that requires different space considerations — so shoppers can see inside from multiple vantage points. They feature lighting and bright, bold signage to attract attention, which also require space considerations.
A qualified design specialist can help convenience stores determine the best option for each of their locations.