Friday, July 25, 2008

Those Sneaky Baskets

(or, The Supermarket People are Smart and I'm a Sucker)

I have heard that the positioning of items on one shelf or another, at the back of the supermarket or right by the check-outs is a detailed and exact marketing science - milk at the back so you have to walk past everything else to get it, lollies at the checkout where kids will see them while their parents are unpacking the shopping from the trolley, and companies paying a premium to have their products on the shelves at eye level.

But I always thought it was a coincidence that just when I've figured out where to find things in the supermarket they move everything around. Now I'm quite convinced that this too is a clever marketing tool.

Tonight I needed to pop into out local supermarket to pick-up just a couple of things for dinner (Friday nights are pie night and tonight it was chicken and leek mmmmm).
I needed chicken, leek, spring onions, puff pastry and evaporated milk (I use it instead of cream).
There's my shopping - everything I needed:

Now, the past few weeks I've noticed some re-arranging going on at the supermarket, and but for the most part I've been able to find everything ok.
Tonight, though, it took me about 15 minutes and several laps of each aisle to find the evaporated milk.

Now look at what I actually bought...

Oh my!! So many things that I didn't even know that I needed - until I saw them while I looked for the evaporated milk, that is...
There's chips and chocolate (just in case - it is the weekend after all and they were both on sale), the Who Weekly magazine (it's their 100 sexiest people edition), cheese (again just in case - I might want some in my lunch box next week), purple tulips, a pastry brush, and (when I finally found the long-life milks) an extra, larger, tin of evaporated milk and a tin of light condensed milk (I guess just in case I couldn't find it again next time!! ;))

I swear it's a conspiracy....

(oh, and yes I do have Star Wars shopping bags... I guess that makes me a sucker and a nerd...;) )


  1. I think you've worked it out, Kuka! What little buggers they are!

    Hope you're enjoying the chocolate though ;-)

  2. Ugh. I hate that. I do it too. It's even worse when I send Sean with a list. He comes back with ALL sots of stuff that wasn't on the list!

  3. Those dang stupid sales strategies, they always get me too!

  4. It's definitely a conspiracy!

    Some companies will even buy up shelf space - and not put stuff on it - to keep their competitors out. It's a cutthroat business!

    I use evaporated (skim) milk instead of cream too :)

  5. Do you shop at Kippax? They have just done a reno which is good and bad. I like the self serve checkout, but don't like the fact that it is easier to grab a trolley and buy a heap of things while searching for the 10 things you really need. I still can't work out where everything is, but I do know where the chocolate is!


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