Kroger launched a fuel promotion, offering customers 10 cents off per gallon of gas for every $100 spent in a Kroger banner. If shoppers use their loyalty cards, they are eligible for further discounts.
Used with a loyalty program, selling gas at a supermarket can increase sales by up to 5%, according to an analyst. Giant Eagle, Kroger Co., Wal-Mart Stores and Meijer are all offering fuel at their centers. According to the Food Marketing Institute, a third of its members now sell gasoline, up from just 6% in 2003.
Supermarket chains that can't afford to compete on price could see success by responding to regional tastes, according to Darrell Rigby, head of Bain & Co.'s global retail practice. Rigby cites Texas-based H.E. Butt Grocery Co. as being particularly in touch with its customer base.