Grocery stores are trained to conduct business in a manner that benefits them, and not the customer. Grocery stores try to increase their sales and profits, often at the expense of customers. Grocery stores won’t tell you many important facts that you should know as a customer. Five of these facts are:
Time: Grocery stores won’t tell you that the best time to do your shopping is when there is no rush. This is because the longer you linger in the store, the more tempted you are to drop things into your basket. While waiting in long lines at the checkout counter, you will see many things displayed there and may be tempted to buy something you don’t need.
So, considering that grocery stores become crowded during the evenings, mid-morning to early afternoon is the best time for shopping. Also, avoid shopping for groceries on holidays to avoid the crowd. You should know what you want and where to find it, and should not resort to impulse purchases.
Quality: Grocery stores won’t tell you if a product is not fresh or if its quality is poor. Their interest is earning profits. One grocery store secret is that they place fresh perishables behind or below the old stock. Grocery sellers also won’t tell you that over processed “health foods” often make deceptive claims. Check for manufacturing and expiration dates when special discounts are offered, because the grocery store will not tell you if the stock is old.
Cost: Grocery stores won’t tell you how to make cost-effective purchases. Make a shopping list and stick to it as much as possible. You might find two brands of an item offered at the same price, in the same-sized containers, but one might be of lesser quality. The price should not be the sole deciding factor. You should note that some unadvertised products from small manufacturers can be both economical and of good quality. Purchasing discounted bulk products and special offers is recommended if the quality is good, the stock is fresh, and you need the quantity. Many perishables are sold at a discount late in the evening. Also, check your bills for mistakes before making a payment, because the grocery store is not likely to tell you if they made a mistake.
Sales Techniques: Grocery stores won’t tell you that they have techniques to increase sales and thereby enhance their profits. Display counters are arranged to entice you to buy products that you wouldn’t go for otherwise. So, stick to your shopping list. Items stored at your eye level are meant to tempt you. Check what’s above and below. Avoid buying items simply because of special offers. You may not really need them.
Customer Service: Try to shop at grocery stores where salespersons have a positive attitude. Make sure that your enquiries and complaints are attended to properly. Select stores where you are made to feel that the “customer is always right.”
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