A Retail Gap Analysis has identified some of the top retail needs in Green River, Rock Springs, and Sweetwater County.
Some of the findings of the analysis were discussed during the Rock Springs Chamber’s luncheon today.
Business Development Manager for the Chamber Kayla McDonald and Data Analyst Trey Petty identified the top five retail gaps in the area:
- Total Retail Sales & Eating, Drinking Places – Green River: The 76.8 million-dollar gap exists due to the large influx of restaurants in Rock Springs versus Green River. Green River residents spent an average $2,430 per household in food away from home in 2016. This is 102% of the national average, with almost half of this being spent on dinner.
- Meals & Snacks – Green River & Sweetwater County: The 13.5 million- and 9 million-dollar gaps in Green River and Sweetwater County are interesting. There is only a 6 million-dollar surplus in Rock Springs, meaning that while Green River residents are likely buying these items in Rock Springs, it also means that they are buying their products elsewhere, as well. It could be hypothesized that the increase in online grocery shopping, combined with purchasing items in Salt Lake City, could be responsible.
- Groceries & Other Foods – Green River: The 11.2 million-dollar gap in Green River is likely due to residents going to Rock Springs to shop, due to its larger variety of stores. Reports show that Green River is buying strong in items such as Cheese, Bottled Juice and Condiments, yet are under-buying in areas such as Rice, Fats & Oils, and Fresh Fish & Seafood.
- Cars, Trucks, and Other Powered Transportation – Green River: A reported gap of 39.5 million dollars exists. Green River residents report spending 27.75 million dollars on new and used vehicles last year, alone. With only one automobile dealer in Green River, it is fairly obviously that they are spending; they are just taking their business elsewhere.
- Drugs, Health Aids & Beauty Aids – All Local Markets: Rock Springs, Green River, and Sweetwater County are all reporting large gaps, but the largest gap is in Green River, where it totals 18.5 million dollars. The large gaps seem to exist due to a vast underspending (when compared to the US average) in both prescriptions and health/personal care-related stores.
Information obtained from the analysis will be used to help existing businesses identify how they can expand, can help entrepreneurs with information as they start their own businesses, and can be used to recruit new retailers in the future.
The Retail Gap Analysis was created with the help of the University of Wyoming’s Market Research Center, and data was analyzed by Trey Petty. Petty extrapolated the data and put it into a searchable database.