Lights Will Guide You Home—Can Proper Lighting Help You Attract More Customers?

Lights Will Guide You HomeProper lighting in a gas station is necessary for the safety of customers and staff. However, proper lighting is also imperative for gas stations in order to create an attractive retail environment so that more and more customers are drawn towards it.

Gas stations are something that can be found in almost every end of a busy street. With such cut-throat competition, gas stations can’t ignore the importance of investing in lighting to boost their business.

Exterior lighting

Customers aren’t likely to pull over to a gas station that is dimly lit for several reasons:

  • There is an increased risk of accident or injury because of a gas leak or spill
  • There could be a security risk, as mugging is common in poorly lit places
  • They will face difficulty in refueling their vehicle and inspecting it

Adequate exterior lighting with flood lights, and other illumination solutions is imperative for any gas station during the night, in order to make customers feel secure. Almost all motorist look at the forecourt before entering, and if the station isn’t adequately lit, they are likely to turn back and look for another.

Interior lighting

Interior lighting is more of a marketing tactic in order to increase sales. Through indoor lighting, gas stations are able to create an aesthetically appealing retail environment for their customers. This is particularly important if there are several gas stations nearby.

Interior lighting is particularly important for the convenience stores. Attractive product displays with bright interiors can entice motorists to go inside the convenience store and shop.

However, proper lighting isn’t enough to boost sales. If you’re investing in lighting, so is every other gas station. Read on to find out some more tactics that can complement your attractive lighting display.

Advertising

You shouldn’t be afraid to sell your gas station customer service and products to the customers. Putting up signs of offers and promotions can really be the differentiating factor that your gas station needs.

Window displays on the convenience stores is also a good idea to promote the products being sold inside the convenience store.

Customer service

Customers aren’t likely to return to a gas station which provided very poor customer service the last time they visited.

Customers should be cared for when they visit your gas station, and if they feel valued they are likely to come back. A great way to improve customer satisfaction is to have customer feedback system in place, which will allow you to get feedback directly from the customers, while also letting them feel heard.

For all kinds of upgrades and equipment for your gas station, you can visit our website or contact us through 1-800-238-1225. We supply petroleum equipment and gas station pump parts throughout the States at very reasonable prices.

Making a Gas Station Safe – The Inspection Checklist

Making a Gas Station SafeRegular inspections are necessary in gas stations to provide both the stakeholder and customers a safer environment to do business. Individual situations may vary, but safety inspection for a gas station will generally include the following things:

Emergency Procedures

There should be emergency procedures for fire, spillage, accidents an equipment failure. These emergency procedures should be reviewed every month and updated as per necessity.

All the employees must be trained and aware of these procedures so that they can be carried out in a timely manner.

Emergency Numbers

A list of emergency numbers that includes, fire brigade, ambulance and the police, should be prominently displayed at the central console, near the phone.

Emergency Stop

There must be a main emergency stop that cuts of power to all dispensing units. This emergency stops should be in an accessible place and must not be blocked with racks or shelves.

The emergency stop must be labeled prominently and should be tested once every month to make sure that it is functioning properly.

Safety Equipment

The most important safety equipment in natural gas stations is fire extinguishers.

There must be at least two-powder type fire extinguishers in the gas stations. The minimum rating of the fire extinguishers should be 2A 60B(E). The fire extinguishers should be adequately labeled and should be placed in a place from which they can be accessed without any danger in case of emergency. They need to be serviced every 6 months so that they remain effective.

Other safety equipment includes a spill kit. Oil spills are dangerous as a fire can spark in no time. They must be dealt with immediately, which is why spill kits are very important in a gas station for safety.

A first aid safety kit should be present at the convenience store and the office. Read more about service station safety tips.

Site plan and Risk assessment

A site plan and risk assessment should be prepared and maintained regularly. This will include the inventory of the goods on the site, especially the dangerous goods, such as combustible gas and flammable liquids.

A risk assessment ensures that the property owner is aware of all the potential dangers that are present on the site and all the steps are being taken to mitigate those risks.

These are all DIY inspection and safety tips that can be done by the station owners themselves. But what about the safety of the fuel tanks and gas pumps? For that, a professional inspection of the gas station must be conducted regularly, so that any potential dangers can be taken care of beforehand.

Call us today for a professional inspection of your gas station at 1-800-238-1225. We also provide on-site repairs for all gas station equipment, so that any problem is resolved within no time.

Choosing a Location for Your Gas Station – The Sense and Science Combo!

The Sense and Science Combo!There are three things that make a gas station successful: location, location and location.

Whether you are planning to build a new gas station or acquiring an already running one, the location is something that must play the most important part in your decision making.

However, choosing the right location is not as easy as it seems. There are several factors that need to be considered and a lot research needed; after all, gas station is a significant investment.

Here are some important considerations to have in mind:

Level of competition

Assessing the level of competition can be quite tricky. While investing in an area where there is low competition and adequate demand is a good strategy, it does not mean potential success. Investing in a busy road of New York, San Francisco or Boston, with cut-throat competition, will prove to be a better strategy than an area with low competition.

This is because no one likes to wait for getting gas, especially on a busy day. So as far as the customers go, the more gas stations there are in the area, the better; as waiting in a line is a nuisance. So in a tough completion like this, the winner is the one who can drive out traffic as quickly as possible.

Accessibility

The gas station should be easily accessible. This means that cars should be able to easily enter and exit the gas station. Drivers will avoid turning into a gas station which makes it a hassle to work around.

Make sure that the location is easily accessible to heavy traffic and goes with flow. The side of the road can also make a huge difference. One side may have more traffic than the other, especially during rush hours.

Future Projects

Construction of overhead bridges or buildings could hamper the accessibility of the gas stations in the future. This is why proper research is important before making an investment. A steady stream of traffic could reduce to a trickle if a project is started anywhere near your gas station.

History of the site

It is very important to know and understand the property laws that are prevalent in the State. Also learn about the history of the site to see if there have been any legal complications pertaining to this site in the past. You will also need to learn about any safety hazard that is present in the area, such as a gas leak.

The last thing you want is the government to shut down your station due to safety hazards or a dispute.

 

If you are looking for supplies for your new gas station, then you don’t need to look further than John W. Kennedy Company. We provide a whole range of gas station equipment, like gas pumps, gas station pump parts, petroleum equipment and fuel management equipment, with over 70 brands in our catalogue. Visit our website for more details or contact us by dialing 1-800-238-1225.

This Way Please! How to Drive More Customers to Your Gas Station

This Way PleaseYou, as a gas station manager, may be pressed to bring in more customers.

Reduced pricing is one way, but fuel sales already have very low margins. Engaging in a price war with other nearby gas stations is only a race down to the bottom, where everybody is a loser.

However, there are other ways to attract new customer and make current customers return.

Here are four ways you can drive customers to your gas station:

Differentiate

‘Differentiate or Die’ goes a very old branding concept. You want more customers in your gas station, but so does everyone else. What are you doing differently?

Find a niche that no other gas station nearby is aware of, which might attract traffic to your gas station. If you are located near a stadium, stock your convenience store with fan merchandise and jersey’s. If you’re station is located near a river where people go for boating and fishing, have baits and flies stocked in your stock.

Find anything that goes well with your area and makes your gas station stand out from the crowd.

Improve Appearance

First impressions are vital when attracting customers. Drivers usually look at the forecourt when entering, even if they do not need gas. Therefore, the gas pumps, fuel oil nozzles, buttons and displays should be clean and in tip-top condition.

Needless to say, bathrooms should be spotless. Multiple bathroom cleanings should be scheduled each day.

Advertisements

No advertising is like waiting for the customer to come to you, rather than reaching out to them. You shouldn’t be afraid to sell your products and brand if you want more traffic.

Put up signs to display your prices and discounts that you’re offering. Have window signs to promote products that are being sold in the convenience store.

Customer Service

It doesn’t matter how good your gas station is and how attractive deals you offer on your convenience store, customers will never return if the customer service is bad.

A top business guru in the world, Tom Peters, calls excellent customer service as the biggest secret of business success. Nothing will make customers return to your gas station like good customer service.

Customers must feel valued and cared for when they enter your gas station and your employees should be courteous to them as well. Establish a customer satisfaction feedback system, so that you can also receive customer feedback and recommendations directly from the customers on how to improve your service.

 

If you need any repairs or upgrades in your gas stations, contact us at 1-800-238-1225 or visit our website. We are a leading gas station parts supplier in the US, and cater to every need of gas stations and convenience stores.

Fuel Management System Buyer’s Guide

Fuel Management System Buyer’s GuideThose of you new to the game might be asking what fuel management system is, and why do you need one for your gas station.

So, before we walk you through the key considerations to make when buying a fuel management system, we would like to address your questions at hand.

What is a Fuel Management System?

Simply put, a fuel management system is a reporting software, hardwired to your fuel dispensers and storage tanks, enabling you to monitor your fuel stock.

Why do you need one for your gas station?

By keeping a record of how much fuel has been consumed and how much fuel remains in your storage tanks, a fuel management systems ensures greater accountability and visibility of fuel stocks, allowing for convenient management to prevent stock shrinkage, theft and outages.

Now that you know what a fuel management system is, and about its importance in a fuel dispensing setting, let’s get into the details of what to consider when buying a fuel management system.

Buying a Fuel Management System – Key Considerations to Make

A fuel management system is a big-ticket item. As such, an uninformed decision exercised in the purchase of the equipment, can lead to a futile investment if it does not comply with the station-specific deployment requirements.

How to avoid such scenario and make sure your investment delivers on the purpose that it has been made for?

Ask these questions to yourself and in the light of the answers, make an informed purchase decision.

Question #1: How Much Accurate Do You Want It to Be?

No fuel management system is designed to yield 100% reporting accuracy. Period.

The higher end versions usually have a reporting accuracy of +/- 0.25%, while the lower end systems offer an accuracy of up to +/- 0.5%.

Now every gas station owner would want their fuel management systems to be as accurate as possible, but for that it also means that you will have to invest in more expensive solutions.

So, in the end make a choice that is financially feasible—both in the short and the long term.

Question #2: Does the Retrofit Solution Complies with Your Existing Refueling Hardware?

When buying a fuel management system, you have two options. You can either buy a complete system—refueling hardware incorporated with a fuel management system. Or, you can buy a retrofit solution to go with your already installed dispensers and storage tanks.

When you are buying a retrofit solution, it’s important to ensure that the standalone system can be easily integrated with your existing fuel dispensing and storage points.

Question #3: How Do You Intend to Access the System Data?

The basic models limit the accessibility of fuel stock data to an on-site model, meaning, that if you want to access the system data, you need to physically access your fuel management system. This could be a problem for owners who run their operations at multiple locations.

The high end models, on the other hand, allow the system data to be automatically synced with a cloud storage platform, which allows you to conveniently manage your fuel retail operations from anywhere, at any time. Some modern systems also allow accessibility through mobile apps.

By keeping these key considerations in mind, you can make a better decision when it comes to purchasing a fuel management system and choose a solution that best fits your needs.

Buy Fuel Management Systems Online

At John W. Kennedy Company, we stock quality brands fuel management systems, designed to provide gas station owners with all the reporting features necessary to make sure their fuel stocks never run low or exhaust.

You can order service station equipment and gas station supplies online and we will deliver it to you at your doorstep.

Features to Look for When Buying a POS System for Gas Stations

Features to LookLooking for a POS system for your gas station but don’t really know where to start?

Don’t worry. We have compiled this brief guide to help you find the right solution for your service station, one that makes filling of vehicle tanks a total breeze for your customers, while also allowing you to manage your fuel retail operations conveniently.

So, let’s get started!

Compliance with ATEX Regulations

When buying a fuel POS system, the first thing that you need to make sure is that the system complies with many different industry specific requirements—the most important being ATEX regulations. These set of regulations govern the design standards of a POS system so as to make its operation safe in a potentially explosive environment.

It Should Enable Short Transaction Times

Gas stations receive high volume of customers every day – around the clock. As such, you cannot afford to spend too much time processing a sale, with the queue of cars adding up and customers honking their discontent to let you know they are getting late. Your POS system should accommodate faster transaction times with easy to access sales information and quick-to-process system functionality.

A User-Friendly Interface

The best fuel POS systems are designed for intuitive operations, having a user interface that is easy to navigate and interact with. The easier the system is to use, the greater the time savings it will offer—otherwise expended to train your staff—and the lesser the encountered human errors while processing a payment.

Designed to Accommodate Multiple Modes of Payment

Consumers today expect retailers to accommodate multiple modes of payment when they are making a purchase.

Fuel retail and convenience store purchases are not exempted. Therefore, your POS system should be able to accept payments in cash, credit and debit—while also offering discount coupons and fleet cards integration.

A Convenient Inventory Management

Fuel retail operations are resource exhaustive. As such, stock levels need to be continuously monitored to minimize outages and shrinkage—not to mention the disappointed maneuvers as customers lap the leagues to look for an alternative.

A fuel POS system should offer inventory management to ensure uninterrupted supply of gasoline to the customers.

A POS system having these 5 key features should be able to support your fuel retail operations holistically.

Buy Fuel POS Systems Online

At John W. Kennedy Company, we stock high quality service station equipment and gas station supplies, providing everything you need to run your business smoothly, efficiently and safely. You can place your order online and we will deliver it to you at your doorstep.

Climate Change Warning Labels at Gas Stations – Yay or Nay?

Climate Change Warning Labels at Gas StationsAs affixation of climate change warning labels on gas pumps, moves towards mandatory resolution in our neighboring territorial jurisdiction, Canada, concerns have been growing among the nationwide gas station owners.

What if a similar legislation is passed here, in the United States?

What implications it could have on the sector and the businesses operating in the sector? Could it possibly deter consumers from using gasoline and prove to be another coffin in the nail for the industry, where service stations are already closing down amidst the surrounding economic volatility?

And let’s be honest here, the idea might not be very far off from being potentially implemented.

When the Seattle City Council Came Close to Passing the Legislation

Back in 2015, the Seattle City Council explored the idea of introducing a legislation, according to which it would have been mandatory for gas station owners to affix their gas pumps with climate change warning labels. But, the idea was not followed into implementation.

Nevertheless, this could be seen as a potential indicator to where things might move towards in the future—as of now, it’s not the case.

And what if such a legislation is eventually passed – then what?

The Implication

The prospect appears to be frightening for gas station owners. But if you look at the current gasoline consumption, things do not appear at all ugly.

According to the 2016 NACS Retail Fuels Report:

“Approximately 39 million Americans fill up their gas tanks on a daily basis.”

Combine this with the total number of alternative fuel and hybrid vehicles in the United States, and it becomes clear that the phase-out of gasoline is beyond any realms of possibility for at least foreseeable future. As such, even if you stick those gas station warning labels on your gas pump nozzles, it would hardly serve to deter consumers from refueling their cars with gasoline.

However, what it might do is create better awareness among consumers to exercise precautions to prevent over spills so as to control environmental damage. This in itself is everyone’s responsibility — yours, ours and every other human being.

Affixing a climate change warning label, as such, could only imply that you know your responsibilities and in turn create a positive image of your business among your customers.

And whenever such a legislation is passed in your state, be assured that we will have the stock of labels for your gas station, like we stock every service station equipment and essentials to keep your gas station running smoothly and efficiently.

Revisiting the Gas Stations of Old

Stations of OldSo, which one of you can tell us exactly, where this “very famous” gas station is located?

Hint: Arizona…

Yes, Route 66 – you have picked the right road.

Driving all the way up to the Gold Hill Grade – yes you are almost there…and?

On Route 66, climbing your way up to the Gold Hill Grade as you drive towards Oatman, Arizona.

Nailed it…

And as you might know, this is actually the restored version of the vintage Cool Springs gas station.

The original one looked something like this:

the Gas Stations

                                                          Image Source: route66coolspringsaz.com

We could only find the picture of its ruins from the archives. You might ask your grandfather or father and they might well remember how it looked like back in the day.

Interested in revisiting those old memories? Come, let’s discover!

Those Were the Days When Cars Were Fed Rather Than Their Drivers

 

Those Were the Days

Today, we have convenience stores that serve customers with made-to-order burgers, sandwiches, soft-drinks and so much more. Back in the day, it was all about cars. A complimentary windshield wash with every refuel, a free under the hood examination and a casual inspection of tires—cars were treated like the royals at gas stations in those days.

An Attendant Dressed in a Uniform Welcoming the Travelers

An Attendant Dressed

 

The clothes that might not make the man, but might make the customers come back – so to put the idea that was used by gas station service companies in those times.

Every gas station had a neatly dressed attendant, wearing the company’s uniform, with a smile on his face and a welcome in his steps. These attendants did everything.

They filled gas in our cars. They cleaned our windshields. And no matter how harsh the weather was, these attendants were always present to serve, now wearing hooded raincoats.

And, There Were Gas Stations Like This…

 

With marketing messages that sounded witty and let’s be honest – humorous!

When the Analog Was in Fashion and Four Was the New

Ah! The fuel dispenser heads. They were some giant freaks of nature, clad in analog and proudly presenting the ability to display four digits rather than the even older three.

When the Analog Was in Fashion

Image Source: The Guardian

Not only the fuel dispenser heads, but service station equipment in general looked very different to what they look now.

Gas Stations that Rented Bicycles

Yes, as one might remember, particularly the gas stations servicing the Washington D.C area.

Gas Stations that Rented Bicycles

How many of you can relate to these memories? You might have something to share of your own — don’t you?!

A Safety Guide To Managing Fuel Storage After Hurricane Irma

Fuel StoragesIf left unattended, a flooded underground fuel storage tank can be a grave environmental liability. To protect the tank owners and their property from their probable health impact, corroded or leaky storage tanks need to be repaired or removed.

Is your fuel storage tank system one of the many things Hurricane Irma left asunder?

Below listed are some measures that can be taken to help it become functional again.

Before the System Startup

  • Ensure that the power to pumps, fuel dispensers or any other tank equipment is switched off.
  • Check areas around the tank for any possible leakages. Make sure you don’t leave out the pump sumps, or the secondary and under-dispenser containments.
  • Look closely. Do you see signs for a damaged tank cover pad? If yes, it’s advisable that you get a tank contractor to inspect it.
  • Use a gauge-stick or water-finding paste to detect water in your fuel storage tank.
  • If your tank is filled with gasoline blended with ethanol and you detect traces of water in it, you might as well run a fuel test in order to ensure that it still meets quality standards.
  • Turn the power on if you find nothing wrong with the tank’s electrical system. If there’s something alarming, get in touch with an electrician or a tank contractor.
  • Inspect valves, switches, relays, leak detection system, and all other pump equipment to ascertain they are undamaged and in a working condition.
  • Empty the sumps of possible fuel spills and clean them. Also, check all the fittings and pipelines. Do you find any damages? Are they leaking?
  • If you are still unsure about the tightness of the tank system, carry out a test before adding any more fuel to it.

Upon System Startup

  • As long as you do not detect a leaking tank system, it’s okay to return it to service, even if the leak detection system needs repair.
  • In case of a damaged leak detection system, keep track of inventory control on a daily basis. This includes tank’s contents’ measurements done manually, recording the amount of fuel pumped, and testing the presence of water at the bottom of the tank. Better yet, seek assistance from a leading fuel management systemprovider to guide you through the calibration procedures.
  • In the event of an inventory loss or a persistent collection of water, let the system be out-of-service. Meanwhile, perform a test to ensure your tank’s tightness.

Do you need help fixing your underground petroleum and chemical storage tanks? Are you considering replacing it with a new one? Contact John W. Kennedy today. We look forward to providing the best possible solution to you.