posted 4 years ago

Cost And Location Beat Fuel Brand Loyalty

Survey Reveals How Motorists Select Filling Stations

Cost and convenient location, rather than brand loyalty, are the deciding factors when motorists choose a petrol station.

A survey of 2,007 motorists by asked them the most important factors in determining where to buy fuel.

The majority of motorists - 43% - cited cost followed by:

  • Nearest to current location (10%)

  • Nearest to home (9%)

  • Option to collect points/loyalty rewards (8%)

  • That it is supermarket branded (4%)

  • That it is fuel station branded (3%)

  • No preferences (4%)

  • Not applicable (20%).

Age trends play a part

The survey found that age trends could be a factor in the choices made by drivers, with motorists aged 65+ most likely to prioritise cost.

Younger people – aged 25 to 34 – are most inclined to favour a station close to home. Drivers in remote locations such Wales are the more influenced by location.

Those aged 35 to 44 are most likely to buy supermarket fuel that the survey shows is favoured more than branded (4% over 3%).

As cost is the defining factor for most people, supermarkets could have an advantage over competitors.

Drivers might earn money off via food shopping, for example, and supermarkets are often the first to cut prices. Shops tend to be in convenient areas too.

Dave Timmis, managing director with Managing Director, said: “While it is understandable that motorists prioritise finding the cheapest fuel, it does make sense to also consider how far away it is.

“While it is tempting to go chasing the cheapest deal, sometimes it does not make economic sense.

“It also interesting to see the impact of supermarkets retailing fuel. While motorists don’t appear to pledge much loyalty to either supermarkets or brand fuel stations, they are lured by offers, convenience and price – areas which supermarkets often excel in.

“Those in more rural regions are often subjected to higher fuel costs, due in part, to a lack of competition. In this circumstance, motorists appear to be more ready to just accept the cost and focus more on the convenience factor.”