It’s no secret. Grocery stores are in the business to profit from YOU! So how do you avoid the marketing gimmicks that cost you the most? All it takes for the consumer is a little planning and awareness. There are some counterattacks that can help you avoid some of these grocery store tricks.
There is strategy in the placement of merchandise. Milk is the number one item most people have on their grocery list. So why don’t they put the milk in the most convenient location close to the front? It’s always in the back of the store so you wind through the aisles and pick up a few things on the way to the milk. Wouldn’t those cookies go great with a cold glass of milk?
COUNTERATTACK #1: WRITE IT DOWN! Go into the store with a written list even if it’s just a few things and stick to it! How many times have you gone to the store and think, “I don’t need a list.” Then come out with much more than those few things and even get home before realizing you didn’t even pick up that one item you really needed!
Stores will more often than not direct you to the right when you enter the store. Most people are right-handed and naturally turn right without even realizing it. Take it from a lefty in a right-handed world! Grocers and other retailers will make things very easy for you to grab a cart on your right, and then notice the bargain display again conveniently located, you guessed it, on the right!
COUNTERATTACK #2: GO AGAINST THE FLOW! Try turning left! Reverse the direction you normally take through your store. Circle the whole outside area first. Then if there are things you need in the center, go through those, but in the opposite direction you usually go. It will keep you on your toes and more focused on your list instead of picking up those tempting selections set up “for your convenience.” russian store
Grocery stores create an atmosphere that is more soothing than the rush and busyness of the everyday world. Greeters, background music, and pleasant aromas all lend to the mood they are creating that keeps you shopping longer. Most grocery stores have the bakery near the front. They know the sense of smell is one of the strongest senses humans have. My son worked for a clothing store and one of his jobs was to spritz the store and clothing every 30 minutes with their name-brand cologne. Grocery stores are no less aggressive, and will filter the scent of “fresh bread” throughout the store.
COUNTERATTACK #3: EAT BEFORE YOU SHOP! Don’t grocery shop when you’re hungry. It’s even good to avoid those tempting taste samples unless you have awesome willpower. If it’s not on your list, turn the other way! Take along a water bottle while you shop to help curb your appetite.
The longer you are in the store the more chances of picking up more items even if you didn’t plan on them. When you first walk in notice the displays blocking your way from heading straight down your chosen aisle. This is simply a “slow down” tactic. You also notice this in retail establishments like clothing stores. They have tile floors leading you in a path and then sections that are carpeted containing the higher priced merchandise. Every display, shelving unit, and floor section has a purpose, to get you to buy.
COUNTERATTACK #4: DON’T BE A CASUAL SHOPPER! Shop with a purpose. Have an agenda; don’t get sidetracked. Avoid those marketers with their clipboards and displays trying to sign you up or get you to stop and ultimately “buy.” Walk like you are on a mission. They can read it in your body language and don’t even bother. If you are one of those that can’t say “no!” Make sure the offer never gets a chance to be proposed.
You have your groceries in the cart. You’ve proudly stuck to your list and didn’t even once allow yourself to veer off of your plan. You head to the checkout and look for the shortest line. Although there are plenty of checkout lines, there are usually only a few open. I used to think it was bad management, now I know it’s just a tactic to keep you in the line longer. Candy, magazines, soft drinks, lip balm, and batteries. Some stores will even have a basket of fresh baked bread from their bakery for one last attempt. What’s an extra few bucks? Believe me, it all adds up and the stores are banking on it!