ALEXANDRIA, Va.—Rachel Krupa is proving that big things can happen in small spaces—especially in convenience retail.
Krupa founded the Goods Mart, a small convenience store in New York City’s SoHo neighborhood that’s a stone’s throw away from Little Italy and Chinatown. With roughly 400 square feet of retail space, the store is quintessentially New York: a small footprint that maximizes every inch of space for its 200-plus SKUs.
The Goods Mart focuses on curation and community. Krupa works with a dietician to provide items that meet certain nutritional profiles—but only if the food tastes delicious. Together, they also make sure that the products are better, not perfect, in terms of nutrition.
“We don’t say we’re a healthy convenience store, we want everything to taste good, and taste is everything,” Krupa explaining, adding that taste it what keeps customers coming back. “For me, I really want to change the food system, and I want to make better food more accessible.”
Growing up in Michigan, Krupa remembers the local Sunoco being the community hub, a characteristic she’s recreated with the Goods Mart. “You knew Debbie who was working at the register. You may run into friends and neighbors that were there. You met there. You just had a lot of conversation there. And when I moved to New York, that’s what I missed.”
The store has a “tip” jar where customers can donate to specific local causes, and they can sign up to participate in community events such as cleanups at local parks.
NACS captured the great ideas Krupa has brought to the Goods Mart in the NACS Ideas 2 Go program, which gives viewers the opportunity to see how retailers today are operating the convenience store of tomorrow. Check out the Goods Mart segment, “Do Good, Feel Good,” and see more innovations from the industry online at convenience.org/ideas2go.