The Definitive Guide to Digital Signage For Convenience Stores
Welcome to our comprehensive guide to digital signage for convenience stores. In an ever-evolving retail landscape, convenience stores have embraced digital signage as a powerful tool to captivate customers, enhance brand visibility, and streamline operations. As technology continues to reshape consumer behavior, this guide is designed to equip convenience store owners and marketers with the knowledge and strategies needed to leverage the potential of digital signage successfully. From understanding the fundamentals of digital signage to implementing engaging content and measuring its impact, join us on a journey to unlock the full potential of this cutting-edge solution and stay ahead in the competitive convenience store industry.
Why Switch to Digital Signage?
So, what impact does digital signage for convenience stores truly have? Let’s look at some of the core benefits of switching your store over to digital signage.Lower Perceived Wait Time: Numerous studies have shown that digital signage can decrease the perceived wait time for customers in queues, leading to a better overall store experience. This only makes sense logically. When your customers have something to occupy their minds while they wait in line or at the gas pump, the wait isn’t going to feel as long as if there was nothing to grab their attention.
Dynamic Content and Offers: One of the largest benefits of digital signage is the ability to display engaging, customized content while pivoting rapidly. Your convenience store or gas station can simply swap out ad creatives with the click of a button, enabling you to effectively run time-sensitive promotions and influence customers to make certain purchase decisions.Building Your Brand: Digital signage for convenience stores creates the perception of a more modern environment, favorably positioning your brand and encouraging repeat visitation. Think about it. All else equal (location, price, etc) would you rather visit a boring, bland convenience store, or shop at a convenience store with interactive signage displays and a modern/futuristic aesthetic? Digital signage creates a better in-store experience, which is absolutely invaluable for building your brand.
Cost Savings and Waste Reduction: Say goodbye to the old “Print-Ship-Hang-Trash” model. Investing in digital signage today enables your convenience store to save money and effort on replacing print signage, while also drastically reducing the amount of waste in the signage process. Update your signage and displays with the click of the button, instead of ordering new print signs, and going through the hassle of replacing your old creatives.
Data Collection: Any business should strive to make data-driven decisions to fuel growth. When you use digital signage, you obtain the ability to analyze the performance of your ad campaigns to see their true impact. This allows your convenience store/gas station to demonstrate proof-of-concept for ad creatives, and see their true impact on sales and revenue. Integrating your signage with your sales data enables your business to see the tangible impact of its advertising, providing vast growth and optimization opportunities.
Choosing Your Provider
Once you’ve decided to explore digital signage for convenience stores, you need to settle on a signage partner. There are plenty of options out there, so how do you decide which one is best for you? Here are some factors to consider when searching for your digital signage provider:
Scalability: Your convenience store signage provider needs to be able to support your business and its growth aspirations. This one is non-negotiable. Consider your provider’s ability to scale the digital signage network as your business grows. You don’t want to decide on one solution, only for it to not fit your needs in a few years.
Reliability: What good is your digital signage if it is plagued by errors and downtime? Look for a provider with well-developed infrastructure that ensures consistent uptime. There is nothing more important than quality, and you must be confident in your provider’s commitment to excellence.
Best-In-Class Support: Although it may seem secondary to things like scalability and reliability, customer support and service are incredibly important when selecting your signage provider. Responsive and knowledgeable customer support can make a massive difference in resolving issues quickly and ensuring a smooth experience. Consider your provider’s support channels, response times, and availability of documentation and resources. When you need assistance, is it going to take your provider minutes, or days? Your business can’t afford to wait days or weeks to have its signage repaired. It is inevitable that you will need help at some point in your signage journey. Ensure you have a best-in-class support team in your corner for when that time comes.
Intuitive Content Management: Your signage CMS is the engine behind your store’s digital signage initiative. Ensure your CMS provider offers a robust, user-friendly CMS solution that makes it simple to create, manage, and schedule content across your digital signage network. Some features that are particularly helpful include drag-and-drop content creation, template libraries, playlist scheduling, and remote content updates. Additionally, keep an eye out for features like screen synchronization that can really boost your in-store experience. Ultimately, your CMS should make managing your digital signage in one store as easy as managing five hundred stores.
Comprehensive Analytics and Reporting: As we discussed earlier, the ability to monitor the impact your signage has on sales is a critical aspect of why digital signage is so great. Ensure your signage solution has robust analytics and reporting features that provide insights into audience engagement, content performance, and display effectiveness. Access to these analytics will help your stores optimize their content strategies and measure the return on investment (ROI) of your digital signage initiatives.
Soup to Nuts Coverage: When selecting your convenience store signage partner, look for an organization that offers end-to-end coverage for all of your signage needs. If you partner with a different vendor for your software, hardware, content, etc, you can quickly become overwhelmed and create inefficiencies in your signage process. Look to partner with a comprehensive signage provider that delivers a complete solution, not just one piece of the puzzle.
Expertise and Experience: Lastly, and possibly most obviously, your convenience store/gas station should look to partner with an organization with a great deal of experience in the digital signage space and a robust portfolio of clients. Your brand deserves top-notch service, and signage solutions that are trusted by some of the largest companies in the world. Don’t settle for less. Expect more from your digital signage partner.
Getting Started With Digital Signage
- Set Your Goals: Get started on your signage journey by clearly identifying what you are looking to accomplish with your signage. Are you looking to drive more sales? Improve the customer experience? How about both? Ensuring you have established goals makes the rest of the process a lot easier, as you can avoid losing sight of your north star and getting sidetracked.
- Location, Location, Location: Digital signage for convenience stores is only as good as where it is placed. If your beautiful signage is hidden in an isolated corner of the store or blocked by a display of potato chips, you likely aren’t getting the most out of your digital signage. Take the time to scope out where you’d like to place your signage. Consider the path customers take through your store, and what their sight lines are. How do your customers typically behave? Do they immediately head for the bathroom, or for the coffee? These behaviors should inform where you decide to place your signage.
- Select Your Hardware and Software: Once your plan is in place and you know where you’d like to place your signage, it’s time to select the hardware and software components that will turn your digital signage dreams into reality. On the hardware side of the house, consider display screens, media players or computers, and any required accessories such as mounts or stands. Much of this will depend on your store’s layout and where your signage will go, so keep that in mind!
Next up is software (your CMS in particular). Your goal should be to select a digital signage CMS that is capable of creating and managing your digital signage content efficiently and effectively. Consider factors like ease of use, integrations, and scalability. This is perhaps the most important decision you’ll make in the entire digital signage process. A poor CMS will lead to poor execution, and ultimately, a poor ROI on your digital signage initiative.
- Create Engaging Content: Now that your infrastructure to power your digital signage is in place, it’s time to focus on content. Your goal should be to create visually engaging content that influences purchasing decisions. Remember, your signage is only as good as the content on it. Invest in the creation of best-in-class content to ensure you are getting the most out of your digital signage.
- Time to Install: Once you have your hardware, software, and content ready to go, it is time to install your signage. Reference your initial plan, keeping customer behavior in mind when deciding where you want to place your signage. Some locations are no-brainers, like at gas pumps or the point of purchase, but consider other areas like food and drink self-service as well!
- Monitor Performance and Keep Testing!: Before you officially go live, make sure to thoroughly test your digital signage to ensure it's working properly. Ensure you are comfortable with your CMS, and understand how to swap out your signage and integrate it with your sales data. Once you are live, pay close attention to your results. Is your store driving more sales? Are you seeing your expected outcomes? If your stores aren’t seeing the desired impact, don't hesitate to make adjustments to improve the results. There is no such thing as too much testing. Don’t be shy to test new ad variations and messaging until you find something that clicks.
The DEEL Difference
For more than 10 years, DEEL Media has helped industry giants with all of their digital signage needs, from content creation, to installation, to support. Here are some of the things that make us so special.
End-to-End Coverage: We assist you with every aspect of the digital signage process. Whether you are looking to start from scratch with hardware installations and software selection, or are looking to level up your content strategy, we can help. In addition to offering a top-shelf digital signage CMS, media players, and more, our content studio does food photography and creative for giants like Coca-Cola. We are truly an end-to-end digital signage partner, ready and willing to help you every step of the way.Industry-Leading Support: We like to say that we are a support company that happens to sell digital signage solutions. We pride ourselves on our commitment to your success, and we understand how important your digital signage is to your business. You should not have to wait days or weeks for signage issues to be resolved. Our support team has a response time of 15 minutes or less, by far the fastest in the industry.
Cost-Effective: We believe that top-shelf digital signage should be priced to fit any budget. We offer high-level digital signage solutions at an affordable price to ensure every convenience store has the opportunity to reinvent itself with robust digital signage.
Now that you’ve reached the end of our comprehensive guide to digital signage for convenience stores, we hope you’ve learned a thing or two! Let’s recap what we’ve discussed.
Switching to digital signage carries a myriad of benefits for your convenience store. Digital signage allows you to create a better in-store experience, drive more sales, and analyze the impact of your marketing efforts. When you are selecting your signage partner, keep in mind things like experience, scalability, and reliability, but do not overlook support, analytics and reporting, and the value of an end-to-end provider.
Once you’ve landed on your vendor, it’s time to start the installation process. Come up with a robust plan for where you will place your signage (and why), select your hardware and software, and get ready to launch! Once you are live, closely monitor your analytics and performance, and continue to test different signage to find what works best for you!
At DEEL Media, we provide more than digital signage. We provide solutions. Our team is here to assist your convenience store/gas station on every step of its signage journey. We are a true end-to-end partner that is fully invested in your success. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help your convenience store transform its signage, reach out to our team to set up an introductory call!
Meet The Author
Bringing two decades of technology operations experience, Jacob Volk, MBA, made a transition to the digital signage industry in 2008. He played a pivotal role in founding DEEL in 2009 and specializes in scaling operations, driving revenue growth, and ensuring customer success.
What is Digital Signage, And How is it Different From Regular Signage?
What is Digital Signage, And How is it Different From Regular Signage?
In technical terms, digital signage refers to the use of digital displays or screens to present information, advertisements, or other forms of content. It involves the use of technologies such as LCD, LED, or projection screens to display multimedia content, including images, videos, text, and interactive elements. Simply put, it is a more engaging way to display messages than traditional signage.
You can find digital signage everywhere, from retail stores, to airports, to hotels, to restaurants, to schools. It serves as a dynamic and flexible communication tool that allows businesses and organizations to deliver targeted messages to their audience.
The first key difference between digital signage and run-of-the-mill signage is the ability to display crystal-clear, dynamic content. This can completely transform the experience of a shopper, visitor, or whoever is viewing your signage. The bright display is hard to ignore, especially when it is in video format. Digital signage is simply more effective at attracting attention than conventional signage. Think about your personal experiences. Which menu board do you think commands more attention, a chalkboard with the day’s specials, or a visual display with bright colors and real, moving imagery showcasing one of the day’s specials?
Beyond higher engagement, another major difference between digital signage and traditional signage is the flexibility provided by digital signage. Rather than taking down your signage every time you want to communicate a new message or make an edit, digital signage enables you to store all of your content in one centralized location, and make changes to display with the push of a button. This makes life considerably easier for any organization that runs promotions or is frequently making tweaks to its offerings.