Operating an energy-efficient convenience store can help your business save money and earn recognition by your customers as having a positive impact on the community. Whether you are already taking steps to become more energy efficient or wondering where to start, industry-specific benchmarks will help you plan and adjust your energy consumption goals. NACS and retailer members are developing these benchmarks by creating the first-ever ENERGY STAR® Score for Convenience Stores, which will be available in mid-2022.
A variety of data inputs are necessary to paint a complete picture of the convenience retail industry. That is why your participation is critical to help NACS and Energy Star collect as many store surveys possible. Each survey response will represent a single store and should take about 30-45 minutes to complete. You do not need to complete the survey all at once. If information is not readily available, you can return to the survey to pick up where you left off. Ideally, you will be completing this survey on a tablet or smartphone as you walk the store.
Before you get started, you may wish to collect the following information:
- Store square footage (you can approximate if you don’t have actual building blueprints.)
- Usage data for all fuels used for the property (electricity, gas, water, propane, etc.)
- Water bills covering the entire period from January 1, 2019, through December 31, 2019.
- Energy use for all meters in the buildings on the entire property, including outdoor lighting. Include electricity use associated with fuel pumps, but not fuel or diesel sold by the store's gas pumps.
- If the store uses EPA's ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager tool, you may not need to gather utility data. If you already use Portfolio Manager to benchmark your energy use, you can save time by submitting energy data through Portfolio Manager.
We are looking for survey responses on new stores, older stores, large and small square footage, with and without foodservice, with and without fuel, and in stores that are located in rural, urban and suburban areas. If you have more than one store, you may continue to add additional store information using the survey link. If you would like to request individual links for each store, please contact Patrick Loftus at NACS at firstname.lastname@example.org with a list of individual email addresses for each store and links will be provided.
What if I don’t have all of the exact data for a store?
That’s OK! We’ve never collected any of this information before in the history of Energy Star or NACS so any information is good information. There are a few items that we absolutely need, as close to actual as possible, such as store square footage, months in operation in 2020, and store services… But, for some other items, such as number of customers per week, cooking equipment, and front of the house equipment, we’ll take approximations. Not every store has foodservice, EV chargers, or carwashes so it’s OK to leave those fields blank.
How long will it take me to complete one or more surveys?
Users have reported that their first survey takes about 45 minutes to complete. However, subsequent store surveys take users less and less time as they get used to the questionnaire. By the 3rd store, some users were finished in less than 10 minutes!
Are you asking me to submit data for all of my stores?
Nope! (But, we’d be very happy if you do!). If you are able to enter data for more than one store, it would be most appreciated if you picked a variety of stores – urban, rural, big, small, old, new, with and with foodservice, gas, etc.
I don’t know have the store blueprints so I don’t know my square footage. Now what?
An approximate square foot measurement is sufficient. If you have a tape measure, that’s closest to accurate, but it might not be practical during busy business hours. So, use your feet and walk wall to wall (inside or out!), factoring in wall cabinets or coolers. You could also count floor or ceiling tiles if you know each tile’s measurement.