Hitting the Ground Running

Tips And Ideas For Convenience Store Owners To Sell Heated Food

Are you a convenience store owner looking to improve your profit margins by selling food cooked on the premises? Are you wondering how to make the most of your store's floor space? Here are some tips and ideas to help you get started:

Deck oven: One item to consider is a counter top deck oven. It's designed to be compact and requires a minimum of space. They're also engineered to provide short bake times which can be crucial when you're dealing with potentially impatient customers. Many models are very low-maintenance, so you don't have to worry about trying to find spare parts.

With one of these, you can offer your clients pretzels, pizza slices, and baked snack items such as cookies or brownies. For items, such as chicken wings, that might usually take nearly an hour to cook, use pre-made food and heat it up on demand.

Hot dog grill: While some convenience stores offer hot dogs that are precooked before being put in a bun and left to languish under warming lamps, this may not be the best choice for your store. Customers may be more likely to prefer hot dogs that are grilled rather than boiled or microwaved.

Depending on your counter space and available employees, you could set up a real electric or propane powered grill inside and have hamburgers and hot dogs have been grilled to order by one of your employees. You could also have a self-serve grill that automatically cooks hot dogs after they have been added by employees. Customers can choose the hot dog with their preferred amount of cooking time and then add condiments from a condiment station. 

Microwave: Although many people may profess to dislike microwaved food, many of those same people continue to own and use their own microwave. In a convenience store setting, having a microwave available for customer use can help boost your sales. Customers can grab a ham and cheese sandwich or even a doughnut and give it a few seconds in the microwave. The result will be a piping hot meal or snack that is perfect for an extremely hurried customer.

A microwave can also be used for things like quickly melting hot fudge topping for ice cream. This can give your customers more snack variety during the hot summer months when they might be otherwise uninterested in heated food.

Once you decide to sell cooked food in your convenience store, make sure that you have a supply of spare parts on hand for your chosen appliances (such as bakers pride parts). If a customer arrives and finds that your grill or oven is broken, you could lose a sale and you might even entirely lose a customer. Keep your bottom line happy by being prepared for unfortunate events.