Not long ago vaporizers and e-liquids comprised a little-known product category for convenience stores. But recently, this segment is just revving up!
So, here are three reasons you should not ignore this growing category:
1. CIGARETTES ARE ON THE DECLINE
Cigarettes used to be everywhere in American society. Fifty years ago, 42.4 percent of U.S. adults smoked. Since then, that figure has declined by more than half, reaching a record low 17.8 percent in 2014. What’s more, the rate is still dropping due to prevention campaigns, anti-smoking laws and higher taxation.
And though the U.S. cigarette market retains a resilient presence—enabled by strong consumer loyalty—regulatory initiatives continue to chip away at the industry’s dominance. For example, New York City, in October 2013, raised the smoking age to 21, the first major city to adopt such legislation. Now other municipalities and some states, including Colorado, Hawaii, North Jersey and Utah, are considering similar initiatives.
2. CONSUMERS ARE LOOKING FOR SMOKING ALTERNATIVES
As more consumers are look for smoking alternatives, other tobacco products (OTP) have moved to the forefront of consumer choice—from the current popularity in smokeless tobacco to the steadily performing cigar segment. As a result, in-store sales of OTP segments have been robust. Powered by Millennials and older smokers looking for safer smoking alternatives, e-cigarette and vapor technology is moving quickly to keep up with a shifting market. Among the components driving segment growth, technology is spurring e-cigarette and vape development.
3. VAPORS CURRENTLY LEAD MARKET POSITION
Currently, vapors/tanks/mods (VTMs) have locked onto the lead market position. According to Wells Fargo Securities, open system vaporizers now contribute more than $1.5 billion to the overall electronic vaporizer market in the U.S., with electronic cigarettes accounting for $1 billion. At an estimated $2.5 billion, the overall vapor category—open systems plus electronic cigarettes—experienced 23% annual growth in 2014, with open system devices generating increased revenue for the category. Not only are vapor items expected to surpass the $2 billion mark this year, but vapor sales could exceed e-cigarette sales by $500 million. Research by Wells Fargo Securities indicated vape sales now outpace other non-combustible smoking devices three to one.
“It seems the market continues to grow. Every month, people are in business that hadn’t been in it the month prior,” said Gregory Conley, president of the American Vaping Association. “The fact that devices and juices are at various retailers and online helps.” Conley said. “While vape shops seek to convert pack-a-day cigarette buyers into going to vape shops once a week, c-stores want to be more convenient than vape shops.”
So what flavor profiles are most popular with consumers?
According to the International Journal article, 7 out of 10 users prefer fruit-flavored e-liquids. Next came alcohol/drink flavors at 61%. When informally queried for top-selling flavors, convenience store operators cited tobacco and fruit, with cherry, watermelon and grape leading the way.
Here at TheCstoreEstore.com, we are helping retailers develop a marketing a merchandising strategy for this growing vapor category by offering cigarette displays and tobacco fixtures that also accommodate vapor, E-cigarettes and many other tobacco related products., Our goal has been to help retailers increase visibility of growing tobacco trends by offering flexible display systems that accommodate, not only traditional tobacco products, but new offerings as well.
Our most current offering is the Vape Juice Tray. The attractive merchandiser can be used with our Metal Frame and Wood Tobacco Fixtures or as a stand-alone counter display. The angled tray allows for gravity fed product, keeping product pushed forward. Adjustable dividers allow for the display of all sizes of vapor products.
Convinced that YOU should be including Vapor E-Cigs in your offering?
Visit TheCstoreEstore.com and view the largest selection of Cigarette Displays and Racks, Tobacco Fixtures, Overhead Cigarette Racks, Undercounter Cigarette Pushers and Display Accessories, including the new Vape Juice Tray. You may also call for assistance at (866) 630-2100. Customer service reps are waiting to serve you!