Better Ways

The science of buying groceries

Bananas in the grocery store Source: Pexels/Gratisography

Supermarkets employ a range of ‘buy more’ strategies including bulk purchase deals, reward programs and mood music. Shoppers can save money and avoid temptation simply by being aware of the strategies supermarkets use to encourage spending.

Supermarkets have done their research, they know that store layout and product placement are key to encouraging shoppers to buy more of certain products. There is a reason staple items such as bread and milk are at opposite ends of the supermarket. But it goes beyond that, flowers and baked goods are often found at the supermarket’s entry as things that smell good put us in a good mood and we’re likely to buy more.

Shake up your shopping routine

Here are our top 5 tips for beating the supermarket strategies designed to make you buy more:

  1. Shop solo and go prepared with your own fast-tempo music (but not your favourite songs).
  2. Stick to a familiar supermarket and create a shopping list according to the layout of your supermarket.
  3. Items at the end of aisles aren’t necessarily ‘on sale’. Select items from within the aisle and compare costs in fixed unit pricing and take advantage of true savings.
  4. Don’t buy according to reward points offers. Accumulating reward points should be incidental not dictate your purchasing decisions.
  5. Minimise trolley space available. Choose a trolley or basket according to the size of your shopping list to minimise the temptation to fill it.

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