The evolution of the supermarket is a lesson to us all in how to make us empty our wallets without even noticing.
If you consider the layout of a supermarket, absolutely every shelf on every aisle is placed to encourage you to spend more than you might need to on your groceries.
As you enter the store, you will more than likely enter via the fruit and vegetable section. This is to make us feel like we are entering a nice fresh, natural environment, rather than a large shed packed with food. The more relaxed we are, the more money we spend.
Expensive items first
Some stores have modified this approach and have begun displaying home wares by the entrance instead. Often these items are quite pricey.
If you have not yet filled your trolley with your weekly groceries, you are more likely to put one or two of their home ware goods in your trolley.
By the time you get to the end of your shop, you are unlikely to unload these items as they will more than likely be at the bottom of your trolley. Aisle aisle!
As you move through the supermarket, you may notice that the most expensive items are placed in the middle of the shelving units, at eye height and within easy reach of most shoppers.
The cheaper items are always placed at the bottom of the shelving units - out of sight and awkward to reach. Packaging
By choosing the supermarket’s own brand for your shopping instead of the leading brands, you can save as much as 30% of your regular shop.
The supermarkets aren’t so keen on this and tend to package their own brand goods more unattractively than their branded rivals. This is not the case with their ‘premium’ ranges however. Bogofs & 3 for 2
Buy one get on free deals and 3 for 2 offers are designed to appeal to our notion of ‘bulk buying.’ However, these deals are rarely on household essentials and are designed simply to promote certain products, rather than save you money. Bulk buying vs. impulse purchasing
Many of us visit a supermarket regularly in order to bulk buy and cut down on the overall cost of the ‘weekly shop.’
However, many supermarkets enhance their profits by placing items at the end of aisles. These are often the ‘come in handy’ items that are unnecessary but might be useful round the house. Most of your savings made by bulk buying will be negated, even if you buy just one or two of these impulse purchases. Loyalty Cards
Loyalty and points cards are a great way for supermarkets to make you feel like you’re saving money by shopping with them. However, they are simply reluctant for you to take your grocery budget to another retailer.
By encouraging ‘loyalty’ with their customers, they very easily get you back into their stores, moving around their aisles, picking up additional items and spending more than you realise.