Convenience store sales are set to soar by nearly a third to £44bn in the next five years, according to the latest research published by IGD.

The research forecasts a 29% increase from the current value of £34bn, with the average annual growth rate for the convenience sector forecast to be 5.1% between now and 2017.

The IGD’s ShopperVista research revealed that the sales boost will be helped by shoppers favouring a ’little and often’ approach, with 49% of them now doing their grocery shopping three or more times a week, compared to 39% in 2009; and seven out of 10 (72% of) c-store shoppers seeing themselves using small shops to pick up parcels if they are not home for a delivery, saving people time while giving another reason to visit c-stores and boost sales

Joanne Denney-Finch, chief executive, IGD, said: "Despite the tough trading conditions, the UK convenience sector is performing well and growing faster than the total grocery market. The convenience market is benefiting as people favour a ’little and often’ approach to their food shopping that helps them budget and spread the cost. The sector is also more competitive than ever, with operators raising their game to attract more customers."