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U.S. C-store count up 1.5% in 2023, with only seven states seeing decrease

Casey's operates more than 2,500 stores. (Photo: Business Wire)
Operators with more than 500 stores, such as Casey’s, accounted for 21.6% of total c-store sales in 2023.

The convenience store universe grew in 2023 for the second consecutive year — with small operators continuing to account for the majority of locations.

There are 152,396 convenience stores in the United States, up 1.5% from last year’s count of 150,174 stores, according to the 2024 NACS/NIQ Convenience Industry Store Count, which is based on stores in operation as of Dec. 31, 2023.

Nearly every state increased its store count including Texas, which continues to have the most convenience stores (16,304 stores), or more than one in 10 stores in the United States.  After losing 53 stores in 2023, California added 177 to its store count. 

Only seven states saw a reduction in their store count: Alaska, Iowa, Idaho, Louisiana, Maine, Oklahoma and Vermont.

 “A-sized” (one to 10 stores) operators account for the bulk of convenience stores, at 96,156 locations (accounting for 63.1% of total c-stores), of which 91,799 are single-store operators, up slightly from 90,423 stores in 2023.  

Second are “E-sized” operators (over 500 stores), which account for 32,864 stores and 21.6% of total c-store sales.  

Here’s a complete breakdown of the different sized operators:


A (1-10 stores)                 96,156                63.1% of stores

B (11-50 stores)               9,157                   6.0%

C (51-200 stores)             9,033                   5.9%

D (201-500 stores)          5,186                   3.4%

E (501+ stores)               32,864                   21.6%

With the U.S. population at an estimated 336 million, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, there is one convenience store per every 2,204 people.

Convenience stores sell an estimated 80% of the fuels purchased by consumers in the United States. The newly released c-store census shows that 120,061 convenience stores sell fuels, a 1.2% increase over 118,678 stores in 2023.

While the convenience store industry grew its retail presence in local communities throughout the United States, other brick-and-mortar channels had a different experience:

 CHANNEL                                            2024                     2023     % Change

Convenience                                      152,396               150,174               1.5%

C-stores selling fuels                          120,061               118,678               1.2%

Fuels kiosks                                        13,065                 13,346                 -2.2%

Grocery                                                45,047                 45,380                -0.7%

Drug                                                     39,752                 40,008                 -0.6%

Dollar                                                    38,435                 37,067                3.7%


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