Tuesday, August 15, 2023

Don’t Drive by Wawa Now Drive-Thru


At one time Wawa self-described itself as a ‘fast-casual’ restaurant. That may have well be true if you were to look at average ticket size, menu mix, and customer base.  However according to Steven Johnson Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions® whether you call it a convenience store, fast casual restaurant or a fresh food fast grocerant one thing’s is true top-line sales growth and bottom-line profits that continue to propel Wawa’s success is driving change at the customer focused brand.  

Wawa Inc. is again expanding its drive-thru store format to Florida with the opening of a new location in Largo. That city recently issued a development order authorizing the redevelopment of the property at 2530 East Bay Drive. In a odd twist of fate site previously housed a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant (Early Grocerant retailer that somehow lost is its footing within the niche).

This new Drive-thru Wawa will be, 2,036-square-foot convenience store will be constructed following the demolition of the existing, vacant building, according to the development order.

In case you did not know or are not a regular reader of this blog, Wawa's first standalone drive-thru store opened its doors more than two years ago in Morrisville, Pa. The concept offers drive-thru service and curbside pickup only, and can serve 12 cars at a time from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. It was designed to offer extra convenience and focuses on fresh food while retaining key Wawa design elements such as its trademarked canopy, according to the company.

The fresh food fast expansion of Wawa's drive-thru store format comes as the convenience store retailer also expands to new markets. In recent months, Wawa broke ground on its first stores in Alabama and North Carolina. Additionally, earlier this year Wawa announced plans for its first stores in Ohio and Indiana, and shared plans to grow its network in the Southeast as part of the company's efforts to its double footprint within the next decade.

The official opening date for Largo's drive-thru Wawa will be announced at a future date. The store is expected to cater to both busy commuters and customers who want a convenient foodservice experience while on the go. Drive-thru’s are not a new ideation they are however where more meals are served daily than any other single format.

Don’t over reach. Are you ready for some fresh ideations? Do your food marketing ideations look more like yesterday than tomorrow? Interested in learning how Foodservice Solutions® can edify your retail food brand while creating a platform for consumer convenient meal participationdifferentiation and individualization?  Email us at: Steve@FoodserviceSolutions.us or visit us on our social media sites by clicking the following links: Facebook,  LinkedIn, or Twitter

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