Deciding to Change Where you Shop
Letting go of a familiar habit can be difficult. Sometimes all that is needed is the incentive to try something new.
- When a Supermarket Becames too Popular
- The Smaller Supermarket Across the Road
- Small Encouragement Makes a Big Impact
- A Clever Marketing Ploy
- Bigger isn't Always Better
When a Supermarket Becames too Popular
Shopping for every day items can be a pleasure or a chore, but when it starts becoming too much of a chore, maybe it is time to consider a change. After years of being loyal to a local supermarket, I recently decided it was time to make a change.
My dissatisfaction with my local supermarket began just over a year ago, when the supermarket chain upgraded their premises and services. After a while I also wondered if maybe they had upgraded their prices, to help pay for all the improvements they had made.
At first the new upmarket shopping place was a novelty. With wider and longer aisles it was easier to push a supermarket trolley as you strolled through the store looking for necessities. With longer shelves there was a wider range of goods to choose from, not that that is always a good thing. More specials were on display, but not necessarily of things you needed to buy. Generally the whole shopping experience seemed, at first, to have been improved.
Until one day I realised a few truths. The supermarket had become too popular. I was having to park my car further and further away in their enlarged parking space. Queues at the checkout were becoming longer, requiring a longer waiting time to be served. Staff became less friendly as they rushed about attending to customer needs.
Overall, a general dissatisfaction started creeping over me. I began dreading the weekly shop for groceries. My loyalty was waning.
The Smaller Supermarket Across the Road
Across the road, on another corner, stands a smaller supermarket, belonging to a smaller chain. It too decided to upgrade it's premises and services, but in a more modest way. When I noticed the new look from the outside, I decided to investigate, to see what it was offering.
Although the car park was busy, it was easy to find a reasonably close car park space. Inside it didn't seem as bright and glitzy, but it was still looking better than when I'd been a few times previously.
The shelves were well stocked, the prices of the items I needed didn't seem too bad, and the checkout queues weren't quite as intimidating.
With my required goods located, I pushed the trolley toward the checkout, with a general feeling of satisfaction so far.
Small Encouragement Makes a Big Impact
It was while waiting at the checkout I saw the first reason why I may consider making a change of supermarket, even if it be a temporary one. New knives were on offer, for free. Now, we've been married forty years and we're rather in need of a new carving knife. Having priced new knives recently, a free one was appealing and the ones on display looked rather tempting.
All I had to do was shop here for long enough to collect the required number of loyalty stickers and I could have a new knife. My mind was made up. I would earn a new knife.
Both my husband and I collected stickers whenever we shopped and also persuaded a friend, who didn't need a new knife, to donate his stickers to us. The challenge was on and I looked forward to my prize at the end of the race.
A Clever Marketing Ploy
Over the weeks my attitude toward grocery shopping started to improve. it was no longer the chore it had become. Part of this was obviously the anticipation of how many knife stickers I would earn. But, the more I thought about it, the more i realised there was more to my changed attitude than a sharp knife.
I rather liked this slightly smaller, more personal place to shop. I didn't feel rushed, hassled or overawed by options. I began to relax and take more time over decisions that would save me money.
Then I realised how clever the supermarket had been. They had won a new customer, quite possibly more than one. Sure, they'd had to promote themselves by giving away shiny new knives. But that gave them the opportunity to draw new customers in and show them what was really on offer.
What a clever marketing ploy!
Bigger isn't Always Better
There is a message here for all who allow their business or their lives to expand too rapidly. There may be instant gratification, but there may also be other consequences you hadn't considered.
I'm sure I'm not the only person who has made the decision to try somewhere else for their groceries. I wouldn't imagine the first supermarket ever thought their improvements would drive customers away. But sadly, for me anyway, they became too successful and took the joy out of shopping.
Attracting customers is important, but so is keeping them. Having received my new knife, we've now found out that our new supermarket offers other rewards, such as petrol voucher points and Fly Buys points. I have become fond of my new shopping place in a matter of weeks. I now hope my satisfaction lasts a while.
If you feel you need to change something in your life, be brave. It may turn out to be easier than you think.
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