Special Report

20 Most Popular Stores in America

20. Best Buy (NYSE: BBY)
> Pct. of consumers visiting in April: 15.0%
> Number of U.S. stores: 1,335
> Latest annual revenue: $39.4 billion
> Net income: $1.2 billion
> Store category: Consumer electronics retail

Best Buy’s revenue has steadily declined from a long-term high of $50.7 billion in fiscal 2012. By fiscal 2017, revenue declined to $39.4 billion, a 22% drop from five years prior. Despite the increased competition from online retail giant Amazon.com, Best Buy remains one of the most popular stores with American consumers. An estimated 15% of the U.S. population visited at least one of the electronics retailer’s 1,335 locations across the 50 states last month alone.

Best Buy, like many brick-and-mortar retailers, has struggled as a result of customers coming into stores to try out products, only to later buy them online. Some of Best Buy’s foot traffic may be people who are engaging in this “showrooming.”

Source: Ildar Sagdejev (Specious) / Wikimedia Commons

19. Rite Aid (NYSE: RAD)
> Pct. of consumers visiting in April: 15.2%
> Number of U.S. stores: 4,536
> Latest annual revenue: $32.9 billion
> Net income: $4.1 million
> Store category: Drug retail

Rite Aid is the third largest retail drugstore in the United States by number of stores, revenue, and the number of American visitors each month. Rite Aid has some 4,536 locations across 31 states and Washington D.C. Like the other pharmacies on this list, prescription drug sales comprise the majority of Rite Aid’s annual sales. Prescription medication accounted for 68.3% of total fiscal 2017 sales, while beauty aids and general merchandise accounted for about 21.5% of all sales. An estimated 15.2% of Americans visited a Rite Aid location last month.

Source: Mike Mozart / Flickr

18. Dollar General (NYSE: DG)
> Pct. of consumers visiting in April: 15.3%
> Number of U.S. stores: 13,429
> Latest annual revenue: $22.0 billion
> Net income: $1.3 billion
> Store category: General merchandise stores

As is generally the case for discount stores, Dollar General, one of two dollar stores on this list, thrives during recessions when more consumers are pressed for money and look for cheaper options. While Dollar General (and investors pessimistic about the economy) flourished during the recent recession, it seems the demand for cheap goods has remained strong well into the recovery — based on the dollar store’s ongoing business success. Dollar General posted net sales of $21.99 billion in its fiscal 2017, up from $20.37 billion the previous year, and from $18.91 billion the year before.

Source: Thinkstock

17. United States Postal Service
> Pct. of consumers visiting in April: 16.8%
> Number of U.S. stores: 12,000
> Latest annual revenue: $71.5 billion
> Net income: -$5.6 billion
> Store category: Air freight and logistics

While by no means a guarantee of financial success, high foot traffic often indicates a business is doing well. It is no coincidence that many of the companies on this list are among the largest in the nation by both revenue and profit. The United States Postal Service is the exception. USPS reported losses of close to $5.6 billion in its latest fiscal year.

Source: Hao dream-case / Wikimedia Commons

16. Dunkin’ Donuts (Nasdaq: DNKN)
> Pct. of consumers visiting in April: 17.1%
> Number of U.S. stores: 8,828
> Latest annual revenue: $828.9 million
> Net income: $195.6 million
> Store category: Restaurants

Coffee is very popular in the United States. This partially accounts for the large number of Americans who regularly visit Dunkin’ Donuts — 17.1% of people nationwide went to the coffee and donut chain in April. According to the National Coffee Association, 62% of Americans drink coffee every day, up from 57% in 2016. In 2017, out-of-home coffee consumption reached a record high of 46%, according to the NCA.