Dollar General is taking over rural America, and it should terrify Walmart
- Dollar General is expanding rapidly in the United States. In 2017, it opened new locations at a rate of around four stores a day. In 2018, a total of 900 more Dollar General stores are slated to open at a rate of about three stores a day.
- According to data from GlobalData Retail, 75% of the population is now within five minutes from a Dollar General store. Meanwhile, 37% live within five minutes of a Walmart store, and 90% within 15 minutes of a Walmart.
- Dollar General is looking to compete with Walmart by rolling out more fresh produce to its stores and make them a suitable place to pick up midweek groceries.
Dollar General is on a path to dominate America, and it should terrify Walmart.
The discount store, which is known for being a bargain hunter's paradise, has been described as growing at a pace that is largely "unthinkable" in retail.In 2017, Dollar General opened new locations at a rate of around four stores a day. In 2018, a total of 900 more stores are slated to open at a rate of about three stores a day.
Its strategy in the early 2000s, when it started to grow, was to go where Walmart wasn't. This meant that the majority of its stores in the United States were located in rural and suburban areas. It now has 14,761 stores across 44 states.
According to data from GlobalData Retail, 75% of the US population is now within five minutes of a Dollar General store.
Meanwhile, 37% live within five minutes of a Walmart store, and 90% within 15 minutes of a Walmart, Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail, told Business Insider on Tuesday.
Dollar General is not only putting Walmart under pressure by expanding its physical presence in the US but also by expanding its assortment.Dollar General has long been known for offering non-perishables. However, in an effort to draw in more frequent visitors, it has brought fresh produce to 450 locations. This enables it to better compete with Walmart and become the go-to place for a mid-week shop for some consumers.
On Tuesday, it continued its 28-year-long sales-growth streak, reporting a 2.8% increase in same-store sales during the third quarter of 2018.