Who Leads the C-Store Delivery Space?

Who Leads the C-Store Delivery Space?
7-Eleven's delivery app is one player in a growing and crowded field.

Even as the U.S. convenience store count decreased, the space is increasingly becoming a battleground for delivery services. And according to a new report, DoorDash has the lead.

According to business intelligence provider Edison Trends, DoorDash commanded a 60% market share of the convenience store delivery space as of Jan. 2021. That’s ahead of goPuff (23%), Uber Eats (9%) and Instacart (4%).

The c-store delivery space continues to expand.

“Looking at quarter-over-quarter growth, DoorDash customers increased their convenience store spending by 162% from Q3 2020 to Q4,” the report said. “Grubhub grew in convenience store spending by 40%, Instacart 21%, goPuff 10% and Uber Eats 7%.”

The report predicts more such growth.

“2020 was a year of consolidation and convergence among top players in the on-demand delivery service market, and 2021 begins with even further expansion of these brands into new markets,” Edison Trends said.

The number of U.S. convenience stores fell 1.6% year over year in 2020, with the store count standing at 150,274. That’s according to the 2021 NACS/Nielsen Convenience Industry Store Count. The store count is based on c-stores that were open as of Dec. 2020.

But even as that happens, some c-store operators are getting more serious about delivery. Late last year, for instance, 7-Eleven said it added three of the largest U.S. ordering platforms  Uber Eats, Grubhub and Instacart  to its delivery portfolio. Together with these platforms, 7-Eleven offers on-demand ordering to more than 90% of the convenience retailer's footprint. The retail chain also has its own 7Now delivery app.

Meanwhile, delivery services continue to expand their reach into retail and take on new partners. Uber offers a good recent example. Following a successful delivery pilot in Dallas, Austin and Houston, Texas, Uber Technologies Inc. is expanding its on-demand prescription delivery to one of the largest U.S. metros: New York City. Uber Eats can now connect New Yorkers with prescription delivery, enabling them to easily transfer existing prescriptions — or fulfill new ones — from neighborhood pharmacies right from an app.

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