Two main factors are accelerating disruption within the fuels and convenience retail industry, according to an Accenture report, "COVID-19: Outmaneuver Uncertainty in Fuel & Convenience Retail": the onset of COVID-19 driving a substantial decrease in demand, and an increase in oil supply, triggering a significant drop in oil prices.
"Consumer habits are shifting from in-store to virtual purchases. New competitors are emerging. Store consolidation is squeezing margins. And with improved fuel efficiency, the advent of electric vehicles, and an increase in ride-sharing, demand for motor fuel has been on the decline," according to Accenture.
"Fuel and convenience retailers will need to account for the additional overhead that comes with owning or operating a c-store in both the near-term and long-term. Ultimately, strategies need to be implemented to limit operational issues, keep employees and consumers safe, and position their businesses for the next wave of change."