The proportion of fuel-only forecourts shoppers is continuing to rise, but one in five shopping at petrol stations are only buying shop items, according to findings from HIM’s Convenience Tracking Programme 2011.

The research revealed that 52% of those who visit a forecourt are now only buying fuel, rising from 43% in 2009.

For those that do buy something from the store, 31% cite fuel as the driver, followed by food to go (29%) and newsagent (cigarettes, news, lottery) at 22%.

Factors that are most important to forecourt shoppers has remained constant year-on-year. The number-one influence on purchasing is still product availability, followed by speed of service, staff friendliness, value for money and long opening hours.

Visit frequency is same as 2010, and those that are shopping in forecourt stores are buying more items from 2.04 in 2010 to 2.22 in 2011.

The average age of a forecourt customer remains unchanged at age 43, but the male-female split is levelling out with 59% of forecourt customers being male, down from 62% in 2011.