More than 50% of purchases are unintended. With that in mind, we understand the customer’s journey when they step foot into the mart. We understand what causes customers to spend more, and how the physical design amplifies it.
- Layout is designed to get shoppers to spend more time
Supermarkets, when shoppers enter, it’s aisle after isle of never-ending goods. Hanging signs of goods located in each isle sprawls all over. Whenever shoppers look up to the signs, subconsciously we think about the items we are lacking, even though they do not need them at all. Cashier locations are not put up, to encourage shoppers to walk around endlessly, aisle after aisle. Marketing 101, if you get your product enough eyeball time, you are bound to secure a purchase.
Think about how the layout is designed where shoppers move around anticlockwise to the check-out. This is done to allow the usage of left hand to push the shopping cart while using the right hand to pick goods out and into the cart. Similarly to E-Commerce, the easier you make it to shop, the higher the rate of purchase.
- Graphical Enticement
Every supermarket entrance is beautified with floral smells and lighting of produce, it makes the colours stand out and the looks of the produce extremely fresh.
Who would not be enticed by the look and smell of fresh produce?
Brightly coloured cereals are at Knee height so children can see them at eye level.
While parents shop with their children, how can we say no to them when they notice their ‘favourite cereal’?
- Pricing strategies
The best profit margins on the items are on the perimeter and the worst at the centre aisles. To bring you back to the previous point, the circulation is designed for shoppers to walk around the perimeter and then double up back to the centre aisles. This ensures that the rate of high margin purchases are always at the top
Most shoppers enter supermarkets to purchase dairy (high expiry dates), and therefore supermarkets designed for these products to be at the back. This ensures shoppers will have a lot of exposure to all types of goods before reaching the product they need and then moving to the cashier where even more products will be seen.
Once in a while, supermarkets allow suppliers to hold a mini road show with a small booth in the supermarket aisles, usually with a small stand and some quick heating crockery, displaying their products into bite-sized samples for shoppers to try.
Shoppers who do try, sometimes get pressured into buying these products.
For those that tried but do not purchase, the supermarket still scores a win. HOW?
After trying a sample, it activates the hunger in the shopper and they tend to over buy groceries when they are hungry.
Now who would have thought?
Shoppers tend to look for healthy alternatives for their shopping. One of the strategies used is the “Health-Halo” effect, touted “rich in omega3”, “no additives” but are loaded with sugar. Shoppers pick up the first healthy option they see but do not read about the rest of the ingredients.
The first thing that comes to mind of a shopper is the added benefits of a certain product and how it is better than the rest of the other products. Once the trust is built, shoppers tend to have the mindset that those products stand a class above the rest, and will repeatedly purchase these products for their future visits.
Another strategy used is, Identity politics – Shoppers purchase on status, show off to their friends, fostering a sense of high morality “cruelty-free”, “ethically-sourced”.
Once shoppers feel that they contribute to the welfare of society, they feel a level above the rest. They have an identity of being a better person in a cruel world. This strategy is one of the strongest used in creating buyer loyalty.
Now that we have explored the strategies above, do you now understand how supermarkets are one of the most profitable businesses in the world?
How would you like to design your supermarket or grocery store?
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