Grab-and-Go Beverages Satisfy Snackers

March 30, 2020

Beverages are popular snack items—especially at midmorning and midafternoon. Try adding specialty coffees, juices, iced coffees, and chai to your grab-and-go snack program for extra sales.

Today’s beverages are more than just refreshments. Many specialty beverages—coffee and espresso, tea, juices, smoothies, hot cocoa—do double duty as snacks and between-meal pick-me-ups. And that makes them ideal for a grab-and-go program.

Take coffee, for example. According to Datassential, more than 20% of consumers who drink coffee consume brewed coffee or a specialty coffee (such as cappuccino or espresso) during the midmorning, and more than 15% enjoy it in the afternoon.

For more information on beverages as snacks, see below.

Defining snacks as anything eaten or drunk outside of a full meal, Datassential reveals some other significant patterns in its consumer research.

  • 91% of respondents had a snack beverage the day prior to taking the survey
  • The average number of snack beverages consumed in that day was 3-4

More substantial beverage offerings such as smoothies, juices, lemonade, and milkshakes, specialty coffee beverages, and hot cocoa—in addition to iced and hot brewed coffee, and tea—can be positioned as grab-and-go snacks, with or without companion food items. Because they are less expensive than traditional snacks or appetizers, says Technomic, beverages are extra appealing as snacks.

Consider merchandising these beverage options for grab-and-go:

  • Iced and cold brew coffee
  • Customizable brewed coffee (DIY with flavor shots or flavored creamers)
  • Specialty coffee (cappuccino, latte, espresso)
  • Chai, hot or iced
  • Lemonade, including flavored varieties
  • Flavored ice tea, or 50/50 iced tea and lemonade
  • Hot cocoa
  • Shakes and other blended iced specialty coffee beverages
  • Smoothies
  • Juices and juice blends

Sources: Datassential Keynote Report, Non-Alcoholic Beverages (May 2015); Technomic Snacking Occasions Consumer Trend Report, 2016

The information provided is based on a general industry overview, and is not specific to your business operation. Each business is unique and decisions related to your business should be made after consultation with appropriate experts.

  • Iced coffee is the fastest-growing beverage on limited-service menus, thanks to its flavor customizability
  • Beverages are the foundation of c-store food service sales, served at all c-stores
  • 64% of all snacks include a beverage

Sources: Technomic Snacking Occasions Consumer Trend Report, 2016; Datassential CPP2014/2015 Snack Attack

  • Coffee-mate® is available in a variety of flavors—in both singles and pump bottles—to bring value and excitement to a customized coffee platform
  • Nestlé Professional has Nestlé® Abuelita® Authentic Mexican Style Hot Chocolate Mix in its lineup of convenient hot cocoa bulk mixes to delight consumers
Beverage shop employee making tea

19 Sales Boosters for Coffee, Tea & Cocoa

Coffee and tea sell all day long. With some imagination you can sell even stronger. And don’t forget cocoa! We have some tips for your beverage program.