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Entries for The Convenience Awards 2021 are now open!

The Convenience Awards recognise, reward and celebrate true champions of convenience retail. The 24 awards are divided into two groups – self-entry and research-based.

Self-entry awards , which can be entered now, will be judged by a panel of trusted independent convenience experts.

Research based awards will be calculated through shopper and retailer research powered by Lumina Intelligence’s Convenience Tracking Programme, the largest piece of convenience research in the UK.

Entry deadline: Monday 12th April 2021


Self-Entry Categories 

Your entry should describe how you are working with your store to help better your local community or the area surrounding your store.

The Community Retailer of the Year category is open to all retailers who care about their local areas and want to use every resource at their disposal to help it.

Entries must demonstrate:

  • A knowledge of an issue affecting your community and how you’ve helped tackle it
  • Links to the local community beyond the traditional retailer/customer relationship
  • What investments (financial or otherwise) have been made in the community
  • Evidence of employing from within the community
  • Working with local charities and groups to improve the community
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The Convenience Rising Star Award is open to retailers of all ages who have opened their first store in the past two years. As well as examining sales results and customer engagement, the judging panel will be looking for examples of innovation from entrants, particularly around taking a new approach to any retailing challenge.

Entries must demonstrate:

  • An innovative approach to convenience retailing, be it overall or overcoming a specific challenge
  • The ambition to want to improve the entire sector with their ideas and work ethic
  • Evidence of how their approach has benefited the business from a financial and engagement point of view

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Delivery has exploded within the convenience sector due to the pandemic and more retailers than ever are embracing this service. This award recognises retailers that have implemented a successful delivery service that provides the dual function of serving communities and driving sales.

Entries must demonstrate:

  • Evidence of a successful delivery service that has either been created or significantly expanded in 2020
  • Proof of a system that is fit for purpose for the size and scale of the business. Can be a partnership with delivery partner or run completely on their own
  • How they’ve used delivery to grow their business via sales increases, upselling, community outreach Effective communication of the delivery service to existing and new customers
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Convenience stores have a big opportunity to satisfy customers and build sales with a compelling food to go offer, including sandwiches, hot food, impulse items and drinks to go, with solutions for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks throughout the day. This award will celebrate the leader in the field.

Entries must demonstrate:

  • Strong sales results in food to go (evidence of contribution to store’s overall figures needed)
  • How it manages waste
  • How it markets its food to go offering at various times of the day
  • What products it incorporates into its offering
  • Innovations within the category
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A single store or part of a group of 9 stores or fewer under the same ownership, trading under a symbol or retailer’s own brand; (1,500 – 3,000sq ft in size).

Entries must demonstrate:

  • Sales growth (2020 AND 2019 figures are requested as part of these entries due to any potential change causes by Covid-19)
  • Examples of investment in the business
  • Outline key product categories/store strengths
  • Explain customer base and how they’ve been engaged with High store standards (appearance, cleanliness availability, POS, staffing)
  • What points of difference the store has to competition
  • Use of technology
  • Use of digital (social media, online presence)
  • What additional services they offer (home delivery etc)
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Any store larger than 3,000sq ft in selling space, regardless of ownership or retail brand.

Entries must demonstrate:

  • Sales growth (2020 AND 2019 figures are requested as part of these entries due to any potential change causes by Covid-19)
  • Examples of investment in the business
  • Outline key product categories/store strengths
  • Explain customer base and how they’ve been engaged with
  • High store standards (appearance, cleanliness availability, POS, staffing)
  • What points of difference the store has to competition
  • Use of technology
  • Use of digital (social media, online presence)
  • What additional services they offer (home delivery etc)
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Part of a group of 10 stores or more under the same ownership, or any store trading under a retail brand as part of a franchise programme; (1,500 – 3,000sq ft in size).

Entries must demonstrate:

  • Sales growth (2020 AND 2019 figures are requested as part of these entries due to any potential change causes by Covid-19)
  • Examples of investment in the business
  • Outline key product categories/store strengths
  • Explain customer base and how they’ve been engaged with
  • High store standards (appearance, cleanliness availability, POS, staffing)
  • What points of difference the store has to competition
  • Use of technology Use of digital (social media, online presence)
  • What additional services they offer (home delivery etc)
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This award is open to stores that have opened from scratch, or re-opened after a significant remodelling, during the calendar year 2020. This award will be given to the store which, in the opinion of the judges, is the best example of a modern convenience store and is open to stores of all sizes, and any ownership structure.

Entries must demonstrate:

  • How sales have performed against projections for the store since opening
  • What innovations have been introduced and why
  • How the new/remodelled store has been marketed to customers
  • Explain competition in the area
  • What learnings from previous sites were brought to this one (where applicable)
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This is a unique opportunity to share the fantastic work achieved by team members who go the extra mile to help their local communities, raise money for national/local charities, and demonstrates impressive entrepreneurial spirit by suggesting profit-generating ideas.

Candidates must demonstrate:

  • Excellent customer service by going above and beyond the ‘sale’
  • That they have responsibilities in the business that make them essential to the store
  • Experience of mentoring others in the business ideas that have helped the store become a bigger part of the community
  • Evidence of fundraising activities that they have created and delivered successfully
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Any store smaller than 1,500sq ft in selling space, regardless of ownership or retail brand.

Entries must demonstrate:

  • Sales growth (2020 AND 2019 figures are requested as part of these entries due to any potential change causes by Covid-19)
  • Examples of investment in the business
  • Outline key product categories/store strengths
  • Explain customer base and how they’ve been engaged with
  • High store standards (appearance, cleanliness availability, POS, staffing)
  • What points of difference the store has to competition
  • Use of technology
  • Use of digital (social media, online presence)
  • What additional services they offer (home delivery etc)
Qty

With sustainability and plastic high on shoppers’ agenda, this is a chance to show how much you have improved your store’s environmental credentials, with the award taking into account factors including energy use, waste management and packaging reduction.

Entries must demonstrate:

  • What sustainability initiatives have been introduced over the past 12 months and evidence of results from these initiatives
  • How sustainability within the business is communicated to customers
  • Investment in sustainability throughout the store (technology, training, range)
  • How they have displayed sustainability credentials throughout its supply chain by product range
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The two following awards are nominated from the above categories:

This award will be selected by our panel of expert judges from all the entries of our other self-entry awards. No additional information will need to be provided, but ensure you are considering this award while writing your entries.

This award will be selected by a panel of retailers from all the entries based on the information provided in your entry as a whole. No additional material is required, but make sure your entry shows you in the best possible light and you might be in with a chance of winning!

Research Based Categories

Research based awards will be calculated through shopper and retailer research powered by Lumina Intelligence’s Convenience Tracking Programme, the largest piece of convenience research in the UK.

Delivering the right range and offer that is based on shopper insight and category management is vital for all retail. For convenience retailer, where space is intense this support becomes even more important. This award is based on the feedback of over 250 convenience store retailers and goes to the convenience store fascia that receives the highest scores from retailers across a range of factors, including BDM support, range support and category advice.

New products can be a key differentiator for a convenience store and a vital ingredient in keeping the offer fresh and exciting for shoppers. Experts from Lumina Intelligence, conveniencestore.co.uk and The Grocer create a list of the top product launches from across the year. 50% of the result will be based on the views of the expert Lumina Intelligence retailer panel and 50% will be based on a public poll on conveniencestore.co.uk.

Supplier salesforces are integral to providing retailers with essential category advise, as well as sharing best practice to help drive sales and innovation across retail. This supplier award is based on feedback from over 250 convenience store retailers, this award goes to the supplier that retailers believe has the best salesforce.

This is one of the biggest awards in the industry, to be voted the number one convenience fascia by UK shoppers is an achievement everyone will want to win. This award is always closely contested but remains a true reflection of the convenience fascia that is the shoppers’ favourite. The winner of this award receives the highest shopper satisfaction versus all other convenience fascia across a range of measures ranging including speed of service, value for money, range and friendliness of staff.

The Beer, Cider, Wine and Spirits category is a huge sales driving category and has innovated rapidly over the last few years, introducing Low2No, craft and premium. Embracing big sporting events and seasonal periods present great opportunities but this can be a complex category. Sales soared in 2020 during the pandemic and this category helped attract new shoppers to convenience stores. This award goes to the convenience fascia that receives the highest shopper satisfaction ratings for choice, quality, price and value for money, as well as the highest % of shoppers choosing their stores for their BWS purchases.

Chilled and frozen is a huge investment for convenience stores, but the rewards are a wider shopper base and bigger baskets. The frozen category in particular drove footfall to stores during the pandemic in 2020. This award goes to the convenience store fascia that receives the highest shopper satisfaction ratings for quality of produce across all chilled and frozen categories.

Soft drinks, snack and confectionery remain significant drivers to store through the day, week and year. Retailers manage spikes during hot weather and maximise seasonal events such as Christmas and Halloween. These impulse categories lie at the heart of a convenience store offer making this a very competitive award. This award goes to the convenience store fascia that receives the highest shopper satisfaction ratings for purchases across the soft drinks, snacks and confectionery categories.

Food to go is one of the most important categories and the second most popular mission to a c-store. With convenience’s share of FTG under threat from foodservice channels, retailers are pressured to innovate. FTG is key to attracting a younger shopper demographic vital to future proof any retailer business. This award goes to the convenience store fascia that receives the highest percentage scores when looking at shoppers’ decision making when choosing which retailer to purchase their food to go solutions.

Fuel alone isn’t a footfall driver to forecourts anymore. The UK forecourt convenience market grew 6% in 2020 to a value of £2.7bn, highlighting its position as a hotbed for innovation. This award goes to the forecourt fascia that receives the highest shopper satisfaction ratings versus other forecourt fascia across a range of forecourt specific KPIs, including promotions, hot and cold food and drink solutions and speed of service.

Managed convenience refers to centrally managed, company owned estates. With different challenges and opportunities to the rest of the market, managed convenience retailers strive for consistency in store and staff standards across an entire estate that can cover large territories. This award goes to the managed convenience fascia that scores the highest shopper satisfaction ratings versus other managed convenience stores across a range of measures including speed of service, value for money, range and friendliness of staff.

Symbol stores are seen as a hotbed for innovation, with outstanding new concept stores across the country. Last year, the total symbol market grew double digits at over 10% YOY - outpacing the rest of the convenience market. This award will be closely contested and hard to call but goes to the symbol fascia that scores the highest shopper satisfaction ratings versus other symbol groups across a range of measures including speed of service, value for money, range and friendliness of staff.