Here's where Americans are doing their everyday shopping

Americans are slowly, but surely, spending more. Stripping out volatile auto sales and plummeting nominal gas prices, retail sales have been continuing an upward trajectory.

So if Americans are shopping more, where are they buying from?

One chart from Dollar General, using internal data and Nielsen sales tracking, helps shed some light on this question. While this is just a picture of everyday shopping — groceries, paper towels, cold medicine — it shows that these consistent purchases are dominated by grocery stores.

As large grocery chains such as Kroger beef up their offerings, it appears they are beating out large all-purpose stores such as Walmart for the average shopping experience.

While Dollar General’s channel is a relatively small piece, CEO Todd Vasos told investors at their annual conference that the chain is trying to aggressively expand.

According to Vasos, the company has added 8,900 stores since 2009 and there are even more ambitious goals on the horizon.

“Between the new tools that we have in real estate and this economy that continues to create more of our core customer each and every year, we feel that today we have nearly 13,000 opportunities,” he said.

So with the growth of online shopping and this huge expansion by one of the country’s largest dollar chains, this chart may be changing very soon.

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