7-Eleven unveiled a store of the future complete with scan-and-go tech, craft beer, and tacos as it prepares to fend off Amazon Go

7:11 outside

  • 7-Eleven launched a lab store in Dallas on March 22.
  • The store features plenty of new additions, like in-store baked cookies and a craft beer station.
  • “7-Eleven stays at the forefront by pushing the boundaries and being unafraid to try new things,” Chris Tanco, 7-Eleven’s executive vice president and chief operating officer, said in a statement.

Tacos, craft beer, and patio seating?

Yeah, this isn’t your typical 7-Eleven.

The convenience-store chain opened its first-ever US lab store in Dallas on March 22. The store represents a stark departure from what many 7-Eleven patrons may have come to expect, featuring a taco stand and even a selection of wine.

“Convenience retailing is light years away from the days of bread and milk being sold from ice docks in 1927, and the industry is changing at a faster rate than ever before,” 7-Eleven executive vice president and chief operating officer Chris Tanco said in a statement.

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Indeed, with the rise of Amazon Go’s cashierless, grab-and-go stores, the time is ripe for convenience chains to differentiate themselves from the pack. And the lab store’s investment in treats like frozen yogurt, fresh-baked goods, and local craft beers likely reflects an interest in transforming 7-Eleven into more of a destination.

“7-Eleven stays at the forefront by pushing the boundaries and being unafraid to try new things,” Tanco said in the statement.

Take a glimpse inside 7-Eleven’s store of the future:

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This isn’t 7-Eleven’s first rodeo in the Dallas area. The chain’s lab store is just about two miles from the former icehouse that became the first 7-Eleven.

“A lot has changed in retail and continues to change rapidly, especially the shopping experience,” Tanco said. “This lab store is customer-focused and will explore new ideas that weren’t even on the retail radar a few months ago.”

7-Eleven stores carry a range of coffee beverages today, but the lab store has a few customizable tricks up its sleeve.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider