Fetid with grease, a wrinkled hotdog rotating endlessly underneath a dessicating heat lamp. The slime green nozzle of a Slurpee machine, clenching and then heaving its bowels into the bottomless maw of a Big Gulp. Sound familiar? All of these iconic hallmarks of the 7-Eleven experience might soon be a thing of the past, thanks to a new store redesign that attempts to emphasize healthier living.
The refresh–which will eventually see a new logo and new look come to 7-Eleven’s 50,000+ retail stores–was created by Dublin, Ohio-based WD Partners, who were tasked to “reposition and rejuvenate [7-Eleven]’s stores in order to better capture the millennial and female demographics.” As opposed to the truck drivers, old ladies in housecoats, and kids on BMX bikes who were, perhaps, 7-Eleven’s previous target demographics.
What does that mean? For one, a new logo. The old 7-Eleven logo is 43 years old at this point, and looks more at home on an exhaust-blackened sign on a freeway rest stop than in a cosmopolitan city. That’s changed. On storefronts, the new logo keeps the red and orange “7” of the old logo but nestles a lowercase “eleven” into its curved back, all on a classy new black background. On smaller signs and other brand identities, the “eleven” is written across the “7,” but on a brighter green background than before, without any white.
As for the store interiors? 7-Eleven looks like it’s trying to distance itself from its unhealthy image as a purveyor of cigarettes, sugar, and grease. The new stores have an almost Whole Foods style vibe–or, if you’ve ever been in Japan, Famima!–with a layout and signage strategy that attempts to highlight healthier snacks and freshly made food over microwaveable nachos and sodas the size of a toddler’s torso.
This healthier (and, dare we say, much cleaner) focus extends itself to the overall design of the stores. Gone are the dusty, crusty red and green stripes that have been ubiquitous in 7-Elevens for decades. Instead, the new store interiors have granite flooring, white tiles, green furniture, and clearly marked stations labeled in a serif black plain font with twee, onomatopoeic signage, such as “Sip. Sip. Sip.” hanging above the coffee decanters.
That’s not to say that 7-Eleven is wholly turning its back on the past. Pay attention, and you’ll notice from the photos that there’s still a pour-your-own Big Gulp station underneath a sign reading: “Slurp. Slurp. Gulp.” Nothing like transcribing the sounds of someone noisily chugging 1.2 liters of frozen gelatin syrup in 16-inch-tall cups to really appeal to healthy-living millennials, is there?